There are professionals in every industry that are tagged as experts. They are highly experienced and usually well respected, have an ability to understand all aspects of the work they do, and frequently lend a hand to help others out. They are the people we turn to for instruction, to get new business development ideas from, and to help us see beyond the obvious when it comes to problem solving.
You can recognize an expert by these key characteristics:
- They are experienced and have a well-rounded knowledge about what they do.
- They are confident in their ability to be successful.
- They have authority and are listened to by their peers.
- They are trusted and respected by their colleagues, clients and even people outside of the industry.
Experts are highly sought after which leads to more work and an increase in income. So it’s understandable why becoming an expert is something many professionals strive for.
While everyone can’t be an expert, there are actions you can take to position yourself for expert status. Are you ready to get yourself added to the elite list? Here’s how you can get started.
Perfect Your Knowledge
You have years of experience under your belt, and one of the best ways to use that experience to develop a reputation as an expert is by continuing to learn and develop your skills. Instead of offering up your experience at face value, go beyond the basics and truly learn the ins and outs of your industry. Try taking classes, implementing new techniques and learning from other trailblazers in the industry.
Share Your Experience
Experts don’t hoard their knowledge or use it solely for their own gain. In order to be considered an expert, you have to be willing to share what you know with others in the industry. You can do this by imparting your insight through a blog, mentoring an up and comer, and providing other information that can help others become better at what they do.
Make Your Own Rules
Experts don’t follow the path of everyone who came before them; they are willing to precipitate change for the improvement of the industry. To be considered an expert, let go of preconceptions and explore new ways to do things. Once you find a better alternative, teach it to others so they can become more efficient and successful.
Focus on Relationships
You can’t become an expert unless your peers identify you as such, so relationships matter. Experts are most successful when they are approachable, likable and respectful. Instead of being an “expert island,” build a community that can benefit from your experience and foster mutual success. It’s your individual relationships and the respect you earn that will catapult you to the top.
Being tagged an expert in your industry is an honor and should not be taken for granted. Do your best to uphold that distinction with humility and you will reap the benefits for years to come.
Are you an expert in the making? How do you view experts in your industry?
Image credit: lusi