The Daily ReTORt

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Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Where Would You Get Advice???

We’re awash in an ocean of experts. You can’t flick on a cable news or daytime-talk show without seeing some expert chatting about child psychology, reducing personal debt, losing weight, the political climate, global warming…etc.

Whether It's Black Diamond Skiing
or plumbing - sometimes you need an expert
Don’t get me wrong, I love a good expert!  When I used to be a news reporter, building and fostering a strong network of quality experts was an important part of the job.  You needed someone to help place the events of the day within a proper context for the news consumer at home.

If there was a huge intra-day drop in the stock market, it was essential to get perspective from a financial investment expert to discuss how that type of event would impact the 401(K)s of Middle America.  Or if there was a violent attack at a high school somewhere in the country, a bona fide news angle was trying to line up an interview with a local child psychologist who might offer tips to parents which might help the child work through the tragedy.

Again, I love a good expert!

But when you’re seeking advice regarding a potentially life-impacting decision what KIND of expert would you prefer?  While there’s a continuum of skill, ability and knowledge that an expert possesses, the vast majority of experts either tend to rely more on their personal “real-world” experience of having gone through the situation themselves versus experts who may lack first-hand experience but have learned from others through observation or through education.

Which type of expert are you more pre-disposed to seek or doesn’t it matter?

I’m well aware that the only answer to that broad a question is, “It depends on the situation as well as a variety of other factors,” – I get that.  But generally speaking would you prefer an expert that has a lot of head knowledge or hands-on knowledge?

For example, would you prefer a marriage counselor who has a healthy marriage themselves or one who was divorced and knows that dimension as well?  Would you want to learn weight loss tips from someone who’s lost a lot of pounds or from a perfectly fit trainer who’s never had a problem with weight?  If you’re just starting a business would want advice from someone who may have run their own business and failed, or would you seek counsel from a start-up consultant who has helped dozens of businesses get off the ground yet lacks day-to-day operations experience?

I’m curious to hear what you think….. 
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  1. The only "experts" that are worth their weight have "been there and done that." How can you teach someone something you haven't really done? Who wants a financial planner who doesn't have a nice nest-egg built up for himself already? Or an online coach who hasn't made a dime yet? Just doesn't make sense. BTW, first time here. Found you through the Mastermind Blogging group. Nice blog!

  2. Great insight Martha and it's tough to refute your logical approach! Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to post!