Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Expert or Explorer

So, I’m seeing lots of chatter in my inbox and on blog posts about how new people get started building an on-line following. One of the big fears seems to be “expert status”. Why the heck would anyone follow me or you if we are not an expert on the subject matter?

Interesting thought - my first response is “because it’s a discovery process, that’s what learning is all about, learn-try-discover-correct”.

Then I’m reading this book by perhaps the best known instant change agent in the world, Tony Robbins. He says that he dislikes “dabblers”, people who are not yet experts, but who post advice on how to succeed by following them through their discovery process. Then he proceeds to talk about how he got started ... before he was an expert and working with Jim Rohn. He talks about setting himself up with no-where to turn but to be successful ... by painting himself into a corner with no escape route and challenging a patient who has been working unsuccessfully with a professional psychiatrist for years.

It’s kind of like Cortes landing in Veracruz in 1519, to begin his conquest. His first action upon arrival was to order his men to burn the boats. Was this bold or insane? Most of us cling to an escape hatch or safety net “just in case”. But Cortes figures burning the boats means they MUST find a way to succeed and takes away the excuses and the safety net.

Same as Tony when he set himself up with the Fast Phobia Cure process. And of course he was successful with it, otherwise he would not be telling the story in his book.

So why are we fearful of following someone who is on a discovery path, rather than an expert? After all, I’m sure we can better relate to the fellow on the discovery path. Most of us never consider ourselves experts. And oh, by the way, there was a time when even the "experts" were starting out - just like Tony.

I’m reminded of one day in a manufacturing plant when I was implementing lean, and the CEO came to the floor. He told me he wanted me to hire a process engineering expert and spend a week off site in a room designing the plant reconfiguration so we could make this happen fast. He didn’t have time for this. It wasn’t much later that I was leading a different lean implementation and watched as the board disassembled and sold the plant assets from the CEO control.

Success with lean is achieved by changing the culture to empower the people doing the work to change how the work is done. It is a discovery process, learn-try-discover-correct.

So perhaps your path to increasing your on-line following is by following someone who is taking the same journey as you, albeit a bit further ahead in progress.

Many of the so-called experts have never successfully done what you are trying to do. Better to observe and learn from those blazing the trail?

I like the advice from T. Harv Eker ...

The most important thing you could do in your entire life when it comes to success, especially with a new project, a new business, a new situation, or whatever it is, is get in the game.

“I need to make more connections first.” Is that the game? No. That’s preparing for the game. “I need to save up more capital first.” Is that in the game?

Listen, you can practice, you can warm up, you can prepare, you can get the baseball uniform, you can watch baseball, you can watch baseball videos, you can get the bat, and you can get the ball.

You can do all those things, but it’s not until you’re standing in the arena at home plate with someone throwing you the ball, and you taking a swing with the bat, that you’re actually in the game.

Norm Bain

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