I’ve always believed that the combination of ignorance and arrogance makes the worst possible person and professionally, the worst possible boss. Still true.
But I’ve come to realize that these two traits are actually more symbiotic – a reciprocal cause and effect.
In other words, ignorance breeds arrogance and arrogance perpetuates ignorance.
Arrogance is the result of thinking you know more or are better than others. The inherent problems with the complete lack of humility are 1) no one knows as much as they could or should and 2) if you do not accept this mental deficiency, you place yourself at a distinct learning disadvantage. Consequently, arrogance perpetuates ignorance.
Conversely, as logic would have it, many ignorant (of the social and academic nature; not biological) people either 1) lack self-awareness or 2) attempt to disguise their lack of knowledge by over-compensating or hiding behind a façade of bravado or pretention. Ignorance perpetuates arrogance.
What’s cool about this hypothesis is that there’s actually research that backs it up. Ignorant people tend to be blissfully self-assured, according to a Cornell University study. In fact, the researchers found that “Not only do they [incompetent people] reach erroneous conclusions and unfortunate choices, but their incompetence robs them of the ability to realize it.”
The prevalence of this double-whammy of obnoxious behavior, I’ve decided, warrants its own definition:
Errogance verb – 1) to be wrong or mistaken without knowing or caring; 2) to act in a morally deviant manner; or 3) to display both ignorance and arrogance. Usage: Televangelist Creflo Dollar convinced parishioners he needed a $65 million luxury private jet to “spread the word of God.”
I can’t help but think of my old principal, Frank Lucia. Ignorance personified.
This is how words are invented! A beautiful word, well done. I also saw that study. Guess who I thought of? 🙂
Thanks Tracy. I agree — this is a relatable Tool to add to our lexicon.