It has been almost 10 years since the below was first uttered. Yet I am confident that the quote and its source will generate immediate reaction. Most never saw the wisdom of the words, for it was lost in the emotions surrounding the context and that moment in time. But removed from the moment and the emotions it generated, the words ring true. They are actually something we should all remember.
Never will anyone have all the information…ever. It is not possible. Hiring someone, changing jobs, investing, getting married, moving, choosing schools, chicken or fish, chocolate or vanilla, or any of the other large or small decisions in life are never made in the context of certainty. We might think they are, but never are they. In making any decision, some degree of mistakes will be made. Sometimes large, often small, and at times not even known, but the errors are in there somewhere. We do all that we can to avoid them, but there is an inherent degree of risk.
And with that, I share a moment from February 2002. It will be interesting to see how quickly I am blasted for using a line from that (insert your choice of adjectives here).
[T]here are known knowns; there are things we know we know.
We also know there are known unknowns; that is to say we know there are some things we do not know.
But there are also unknown unknowns – there are things we do not know we don’t know.
Maybe, just maybe everyone can put aside their emotions and think about the words. It is something we should all remember when making decisions. So blast away at the source, the context, and the events that followed, but heed the words…they are true regardless of the situation.