Whether your goal is to write a book, learn HTML, get promoted at work, raise wonderful kids, or help to motivate and inspire others – you should probably aim to become an expert at whatever you are trying to do.
Because it is much easier to achieve any of these goals if:
1) You know what you are doing
2) You have authority and other people trust you
Besides, becoming an expert holds multiple other benefits:
• You become a trusted resource and people appreciate your advice
• You hold the true power to teach others how to succeed
• You gain respect of your co-workers, boss and other people who admire your skills
• You do a great job and make better decisions
• And consequently, you get greater rewards for your efforts (money, gratitude and appreciation)
If you are interested in becoming an expert at almost any field here is a 5 step process that can help you to do just that:
1. Start at the beginning.
The crucial part of becoming an expert is to know a lot about whatever it is you do. In order to gain this knowledge, you must know WHERE to look for it and WHAT questions to ask. And in order to know what to ask, one should first learn the basics and terminology. This is where a lot of people have difficulties. I recently heard an interview given by an Editor of a huge Publishing house. He said that if someone wants to sell a book about any subject for beginners, they should probably name it something like “Advanced time management techniques” or “How to flirt like a pro”. For some reason we strongly dislike thinking of ourselves as amateurs or beginners. Maybe it is a quick-fix mentality talking. Or maybe we subconsciously hope if we learn the pro stuff, the basics will somehow take care of themselves. Who knows?
But unfortunately the truth is that no one can become a master without starting at the beginner’s level first. It would be foolish to give a five-year-old the “New York Times” and expect him to learn how to read. He needs to learn his “ABC” first. Similar memorizing bits and pieces of information here and there can help you to put on a false front for a while, but will not make you a true expert. Therefore, do not skip the first step. Learn the basics really well before you do anything else.
2. Understand the process.
Understanding what you are learning and why, gives you the motivation and focus to act on your goal. But you cannot do anything until you know HOW to do it (at least at some minimal level). Therefore, before taking massive action, learn as much as you can about the area of your interest.
There are many ways you can do this:
• find out if there are any techniques that you can use
• ask people who are already “experts” for help and advice
• watch someone else do it
• read at least one book a month on the topic
• search the Internet for helpful information
• make a resource bank of everything that you feel is worthy as you learn (document and save all the helpful information that you might use in the future),
• attend seminars or take classes
• decide where to start and make an action plan