It’s one of those labels we want, but do we dare tell the world we are one? Will we be labeled an egotistical narcissist if we declare “I’m an expert.” On the other hand, is it okay if others call us an expert? How many people need to consider us an expert before we can say we are one?
Before you drive yourself crazy pondering the question, realize this – it doesn’t matter.
We’re all experts at something.
The question is what – what’s that thing we’re so good at that people call us an expert. And it’s okay to brag. You’ve worked hard to acquire the experience and expertise to be called an expert. You know you have the skills. Wear the title with pride. Then remember…
None of us are an expert at everything.
We know that, right? Just because we aren’t an expert at something doesn’t mean we can’t weigh in on conversations. In fact, sometimes it might be helpful for a person to hear the opinion of a non-expert. Here’s an example.
One of my first jobs in human resources was working with our technology team on the HRMS system. My role was to listen to the field users about the system – what they liked, didn’t like, etc. and bring that feedback to the technology team. The tech team would make changes and enhancements to the system based upon user feedback. Once a change was made, it was my job to test it and get it ready for implementation.
Was I a tech expert? No. But that wasn’t what was needed. The tech team intentionally wanted a non-expert to tell them how to make the system work for the human resources department.
As business professionals, sometimes we need to listen to experts. And sometimes we don’t. It’s all about knowing what information you should be processing. And exactly where to find it.
Image courtesy of HR Bartender