One of the keys to success is competence for the task a person
has chosen for himself. Lack of competence produces quacks in
various fields that are a shame to knowledge and learning. It
takes years of hard work and dedication to achieve competence
and only a few careless statements to lose it.
Here are some requisites of competence.
Firstly, a person should know what he does not know and must
not express an opinion in a sphere that he is not fully
conversant with. It will not belittle him if he says that he
has little or no knowledge about a particular issue and that
he would rather refer others to someone who is an expert in a
Secondly, while stating the opinion of someone, a person must
say that this is his understanding of that opinion and can be
wrong. His statement should not be couched in words that say
that he has said something that cannot be challenged with
regard to someone’s view. Human understanding can falter.
Thirdly, a person must not discuss the competence of some
other person in public. If he thinks that something has to be
addressed in this regard, he should get in touch with that
person at a personal level and present him his critique to
him. It is an obligation that we owe to people whose
competence is not up to the mark.
Fourthly, one area where competent people must look to solve a
nagging issue is to not spare even the most obvious of sources
from re-checking and analysis. Sometimes, the truth is right
under our chin whilst we are searching for it in far off
frontiers. Thoroughness requires that we leave no stone
unturned – even the most “obvious” ones.
Fifthly, if a person is able to teach or present one’s view on
a subject, he will find that his grasp on the topic has
increased manifold. This is because when a person presents his
view he finds out the gaps and missing links in his
conversation. Questions and criticism further refine his view,
and add to his competence.