Sharing expertise effectively

All of us with expertise want to share it one way or another. How we do that is in flux with all the tools and freedom to access provided online. Sharing expertise calls into question the implicit business model we're using. It's easy to fall into flawed models because we've been customers of them for most of our lives. We assume without question how to deliver value to others with our expertise. We'll adopt one of these generic approaches:
  1. Numbers game: If all we care about is the number of hits, subscribers, or other metrics of success, we'll have the sense to do the wrong thing. Our value proposition is designed for hit-n-run customers and bargain shoppers who cannot appreciate or utilize our expertise. We've unconsciously adopted a mass distribution model of putting out caseloads of the same stuff for anonymous consumers. We'll feel drained by offering our expertise and not understand how we're making ourselves miserable with our value proposition.
  2. Delivery systems: If we care about the quality of what we offer, we'll put more work into sharing our expertise. We'll find ways to make it more respectable, attractive or qualified. We'll think of improving the look, packaging or take away value. We'll figure out how to provide a more sophisticated product with our expertise that will only appeal to equally refined customers. We'll assume we've got the market figured out and continue to 'try harder" to deliver what is tried and true. We'll feel proud of our successes and committed to heroic efforts.
  3. Discovery systems: If we care about our customers, we will constantly be discovering how to serve them. We'll question what we've already delivered, how it's being used and whether this calls for a change. We'll learn from the feedback we get through every channel we're monitoring. We'll assume the customers can teach us how to reach them, to position our expertise to get on their wavelength and to relate to their situations. We'll feel mutually respectful and fascinated by what comes about.
Delivery systems backfire. They breed resentment, powerlessness and dependency on both sides of the transaction. They cannot empower customers because they tell them what to think. Delivery systems over-confidently push product through distribution pipelines and learn nothing beyond "try harder" from the feedback. They appear insensitive, unresponsive and domineering to customers who want changes.

Until systems of expertise switch from delivering to discovering, learners will become disempowered by buying what's for sale.

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