The Expert Story: A Lot of Them Ain’t Sh*t

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I was listening to a podcast today. The guest was a woman whose expertise was, in her own words, being a serious online influencer who teaches others how to do the same. (I’m paraphrasing her statement so as not to give her away). The woman talked up how she had connected herself to certain people and events and how she had been booked to speak on all these big stages… in other words, she was selling herself. Smart thing to do when the light is shining on you.

She went on to talk about this big-time event that she would soon be presenting at and, without saying it in so many words, how her killer expertise is what got here there.

I was intrigued by this woman. Maybe I could learn some influencer strategies for myself from her. As the podcast interview ended, I looked the woman up on Twitter. The person I found must have been someone else with the same name. Because this person had 2,000 followers and was following 2,000 people.

Not exactly “influencer” status.

I went back to the search results. This was the right person. Disappointing, but I gave her the benefit of the doubt. Not everyone invests a ton of energy in every single platform. Maybe she’s killing it on Instagram or Facebook or YouTube and doesn’t do much tweeting.

Nope. Nope. And nope.

I went to her website. Her website doesn’t work on mobile. Really — the menu buttons literally don’t work. There are white-on-white text blocks. There’s nothing there that says, “Influence.” Her web presence makes this woman appear technologically illiterate.

But you’re to believe she is an expert at what she does. Smh….

***

There’s a guy who co-wrote a good book. I read his book and liked it. This guy promotes himself as a speaker or expert of sorts now. I’ve watched a few videos of his presentations. As astage presenter, this guy is trash. A lot of blah-blah platitudes, no stage presence or skill in delivery. Not to mention his needs-help-fast fashion sense.

I’m not mad at the guy. His book is good. He has solid credibility and experience in his field. He’s a good writer (kind of— based on how this guy talks, I’d assume that his co-author did most of the heavy lifting for his book— this happens more than you think). Based on his background, he’s damn good at his day job. One thing he’s not is a presenter. He has the sheen of fame on him though, and that matters some. (see Work On Your Game Podcast #658). I predict he doesn’t go far with the stage stuff because he’s just not good at it.

What These Stories Are Telling You 

  1. Don’t believe anyone who tells you they’re an “expert” — and expert can show you, via teaching and demonstrated results (i.e., “I’ve coached ____ players who went to the NBA;” “the people who’ve attended my sales seminars have sold 20% more products in the following quarter”) (#17)
  2. There’s roughly one true Expert (one who has comprehensive and authoritative knowledge in a particular area) for every ten self-proclaimed “experts” you hear about. The very word means little to nothing now.
  3. Titles mean nothing. They’re often either made up by the person using them, or given by a boss who wants to make employees feel and appear important to outsiders when the employee is nothing more than a middleman peon. (#202)
  4. Everyone is trying hard these days to put themselves on display. There aren’t enough of these on-display people, though, who are actually good and deserving of attention. You will be sifting through lots o’ garbage. I apologize on behalf of these people. Choose your gurus carefully (episode #552)
  5. With what I’ve just said, there is a huge NEED for real experts who can clearly demonstrate their skill and can efficiently and effectively help people who need it. (#556)
  6. Have your game ready for when you do get your shot. (#114)
  7. If you’re garbage right now, remain calm, Work On Your Game and get better. Stay quiet. There are enough garbage players talking already. Don’t make it worse. (#550)
  8. Stop waiting for your shot and go do something to help yourself. (#170)
  9. If what you do does not tangibly change your circumstances, you haven’t done anything yet. (#449)
  10. There’s a Work On Your Game Podcast episode for everything I’ve said in this post.

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