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Dunning Kruger Effect: Why managerial effectiveness in India is broken

Unless you are a mentalist and can read people’s minds, it is likely that you rely on your perceptions – when it comes to understanding what people think about you. This is true for me, you, and almost everyone.

Research conducted by Great Manager Institute with 4,296 Indian managers, over the last 6 months reveals that unfortunately these perceptions that managers carry, are largely INACCURATE. 

As a result, gaps exist between our self-perception and the team’s perception – the Dunning-Kruger effect. This effect suggests that we tend to overestimate our competence in areas where we lack information resulting in lack of managerial effectiveness in India.

I have some interesting data for you below:

We asked 4,296 Indian managers to rate themselves on their ability to:

Candid Communication (Giving straight answers to questions)
Involvement in Decisions (Taking the team’s opinion in work-related decisions)
Reliability (Keeping their promise)
Care (Moving from transactional to relational
Expectation Setting (Proving clarity on expectations)
…..and 12 more areas

And we were surprised.

More than 70% of the surveyed managers rated themselves way higher than what their team members experienced, in all the above areas.


An in-depth understanding of ANYTHING takes years of study and practice – formally or informally. I’m a management graduate and I have been trained to develop good marketing plans. 

However, I don’t recall learning about setting clear expectations, involving people in decisions, or any of the points mentioned above.

And that’s precisely why I was compelled to write this. 

Nobody wakes up in the morning, with the intent of being a “Bad Boss”. 

70% of managers don’t know that they aren’t managing effectively, and those who know may not be doing anything about it (the KNOWING-DOING GAP). This results in a lack of managerial effectiveness.

You can read the full report on leadership blindspots here.

In the end, we end up being a country where people are universally unhappy with managers.

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