How to Choose Good Experts

How to make sure experts can deliver what they promise.

Stever Robbins
4-minute read
Episode #106

One of the time-honored ways of saving time is to learn from experience—someone else’s. We turn to experts to learn what to do.

Why Use Experts?

We love with the idea of experts. We love to believe there’s someone out there who has everything we want in life. Not only do they have everything, but they know exactly which steps will bring us to same land of Milk and Honey they live in.

There are only two problems. First, milk and honey just isn’t the delectable taste treat you might think. And second, experts aren’t even starting from the same place you are. They aren’t going where you’re going. They don’t like what you like, and what they did may not work in your world.

Not only that, they’re telling you what they think worked. Maybe they did everything wrong and succeeded in spite of themselves. So-called financial Maestro Alan Greenspan just said maybe he was wrong for, oh, say, 35 years. Oops! His little mistake is costing us trillions and global financial collapse. Experts aren’t all they’re cracked up to be.

Realize Experts Aren’t Always Right

In school,  if we did the same things the teachers did, we would get the same answers. That works when you’re learning basic skills, but not for bigger questions.

In school, there were right answers. And if we did the same things the teachers did, we would get the same answers. That works when you’re learning basic skills. But for bigger questions, the answers change, the paths change, and most life/self-help experts aren’t necessarily authorities on anyone’s situation but their own. And sometimes, not even that.

(I am, of course, an exception to that. Everything I say is perfect, applies perfectly to your situation, and will lead you to the land of lasagna and Oreo ice cream cake, both of which are much tastier than milk and honey.)


About the Author

Stever Robbins

Stever Robbins was the host of the podcast Get-it-Done Guy from 2007 to 2019. He is a graduate of W. Edward Deming’s Total Quality Management training program and a Certified Master Trainer Elite of NLP. He holds an MBA from the Harvard Business School and a BS in Computer Sciences from MIT.