The Curse of Knowledge

One of the toughest obstacles to effective communication, whether writing or speaking, is connecting to your audience. Many experts will tell you that the key to this connection is to place yourself in the mindset of the audience. The problem with this solution is that once you've become an expert at something, it's hard to put yourself in the shoes of someone who doesn't have your knowledge. To put it simply, when you know something, it becomes difficult to imagine not knowing it. Coined the "curse of knowledge" in a 1989 paper in The Journal of Political Economy, this concept is essential to those in the business world, especially marketing professionals, since it directly influences the way you convey your product, service or idea to the masses. Basically, it is a lot more difficult to put things in "layman's terms" than one might think.