Circle of Competence

The forty-five years of reign by Queen Elizabeth 1 was one of triumph and success, inspiring loyalty and creativity in her citizens. However, when she ascended the throne in 1558, her country was in a precarious political situation.

What was her key to success? Of course, she had excellent education and was a survivor.

However, what probably made the key difference was her ability to identify and admit what she didn’t know. And her courage to take action to fill the gap.

She built a Royal Advisory Board, not with YES men, but with a blend of the old and the new to develop stability and achieve continuity. She kept it small to ensure real discussions – with a variety of opinions challenged and debated.

In essence, Queen Elizabeth 1 knew her Circle of Competence. And brought in others for areas outside the circle.

Circle of Competence is the small circle within a big circle. Many a times, it is much smaller than we would like to believe…

What does it mean to us – as individuals, as professionals?   

Honest self-reflection followed by determined actions:

  • What is my Circle of competence?
  • How am I building and maintaining one?
  • How comfortable am I in recognizing and accepting what’s outside?
  • How do I operate when outside of circle of competence?  

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