THE PRINCIPLE OF USING EXPERTS
TO LEVERAGE YOUR TIME AND RESULTS
PRETTY SIMPLE, PRETTY APPARENT, BUT MANY DON'T DO IT!
If you spend time learning, it is essential to learn what is accurate and to learn in a way that is guided toward what is most effective. Experts are more accurate, of course, and their experience helps them to guide you to what is most essential and away from mistakes. Follow the rules and cautions suggested in Authentic Effective Learning, for getting good information in the most effective way.
WHO IS AN EXPERT?
You wouldn't want to learn about how to live your life from a person who isn't living a good life.
If someone is in poor physical condition, there is something going on there that suggests lack of judgment or discipline or knowledge. There might be an exception, but I don't know of any and, for caution's sake, I'd avoid taking the chance.
CAN I GET IT AT A REASONABLE COST COMPARED TO THE BENEFIT?
Most of one's learning can take place in a group format, where there are courses or teleconferences where the costs are spread among many.
A life coach or a performance coach is most often most effective in a one on one basis, where you use very little of their time per week, but do engage directly. It has been my experience that this pays off - at least when one is serious. Limit the contract's duration if you want to test the waters for little risk. A good expert directs you to do as much of the work of learning and doing as possible, so that his expertise is used only where it is of the most value.
When I did management consulting, I recommended to my clients that they utilize me as little as possible in the things that the clients could do for themselves, with my guidance. In this way they would only pay for what I could exclusively provide - which presumable was of the greatest value.
THE PAYOFF OF LEARNING SOONER
If you learn something sooner, you will be able to use it for more time. So what might not pay off in the short term may still be worth the price. Always use the long term in estimating the benefits!
FINDING THE EXPERTS
Ask anybody who might have used an expert (even if you don't know the person you are calling, as they most often will be glad to help.)
Being in a network of professionals or an affiliation group who might use this type of expert.
Associations you join
Read one of their books!
A website of the expert
Your certainty level for hiring anybody where it is for a substantial sum should be very high, say, 99%.
Those who are exceptionally successful are experts at hiring others - and then making sure they do the job. (Read John Maxwell and Brian Tracy for some of the best writings in business type things - but those apply to anything where success and good management are needed.)
SCREENING THE EXPERTS
References - The bigger the project, the more time you should spend checking these out. Always check the references! Don't pass them by because the guy is impressive.
Experience - How much? Directly in what you want?