Expertise is only valuable if expertly applied

Expertise is only valuable if expertly applied

The alleged scepticism in the general public about so-called ‘experts’ has been much discussed.  While we are still firm believers in the power of expertise, there’s more to solving clients’ problems than just putting an expert in front of them.

We’ve identified three key elements to bring expertise to bear effectively…

Get the expert right

Expertise can be unhelpful if the expert isn’t right. Experts often have a strong point of view and are more than happy to share it. Will they keep their ego in check, recognise the limits of their knowledge and show awareness of their own biases? The best experts show a thirst for building and revising their point of view through a wide variety of sources. They will be happy to have their ideas and perspectives challenged in open court.

Get the expertise mix right

We all make better, more confident decisions when different perspectives, opinions and ideas have been considered. As researchers, we invite a diversity of expertise to challenge our own opinions when working on a client problem. Expertise can come from another sector, a technical specialist, or a colleague with a passion in the area. And the mix may need to change at different stages of the project: brainstorming design, data synthesis or storyboarding.  Creating the right environment that is constructively challenging leads to a better narrative: one that is more insightful, credible and trustworthy.

Work with expertise in the right way

The DP person on a project is expert in data structure; the analyst expert on method mechanics; the project team are expert in the client, their issues and objectives. And the client themselves brings another expertise: of the organisation for which they work.  We must understand and embrace all these angles to identify and communicate great insights and help plan what to do with them.  And that requires mutual respect and active listening.  It means openness to the opinions of others and to our own ability to make mistakes. We need checks and balances in the form of frameworks, processes and checklists.

We can help

Our core expertise is in unlocking opportunity.  This means deploying a tried and tested approach that results in concrete plans that you can execute with confidence.  If your brand needs some expert attention, we’d love to hear from you.

Previous reading from Jonathan.