Finding Advisor Sweet Spot

Just as we entered a post-rona world, I enjoyed a video call with the Head of Talent for a global firm based out of Switzerland.

Sadly some ʜʀ types I've encountered these days have placed the genuine nurturing of talent in their organisation as rock bottom of their to-do list. If even making their list at all.

Refreshing to have discussions with an outlier.

There was one particular learning I took away with a shudder.

Those in her position tend to shy away from talking with self-professed freelance 'experts'. Chiefly because they've been worn down and disappointed over the years by "so much crud out there". As in the main, such experts do not actually possess any expertise.

Experience she accompanied with the empathetic lament of how hard it must be for the authentically motivated, legitimately qualified and real difference-makers to make hay.

Also painfully bringing to mind the withering put-down of today's political class, economists and, lest we forget, epidemiologists. Namely, 'we've had enough of experts'.

I recalled back in 2011, noting in passing Noreena Hertz. Ahead of the curve, suggesting we recalibrate our approach to experts with her ᴛᴇᴅ talk.

Nowadays, I shun the label. Opting instead to explain my specialism.

From the end of the last century, I deepened trust by suggesting to prospects that although I'd never know as much as them about running their business, I held the specific specialty in the particular area we were looking at together.

I was struck at some of the replies to the above tweet.

Does the person offering parenting advice actually have no kids themselves?

People who have bad experiences in restaurants are more loud and likely to leave a review.

Most people giving advice are people that are not using the advice for themselves.

Whilst these warnings are related to the perils of following just about any advice on any topic on social media, there's a clear crossover with our solution selling.

It's so easy to go down the wrong path, not realise you heading too far along the current 'pendulum swing', and are you actually being forced fed a pill that's the wrong colour?

Especially when the prospect is swayed by the supposed immediacy or simplicity, affordability or secrecy, of the offer.

Eerily reminiscent of our present position with ᴀɪ. The widespread joke now being, why do you think its output is so good on topics with which you aren't familiar, when you've asked it about your key area of knowledge, only to be served up what you know to be drivel?

My portfolio of services right now - I unlock re-energised, advancing, distinctive video sales calls - has the rather significant competition of youtube videos, podcasters and twitter hashtags. In that many a potential client may well think it is something they can go into all by themselves.

Sure, such folk are not my people. But even with others realising success will not emanate from trying alone, the attraction of the quick and easy fix can creep in.

I'm atypical in that I deliberately stay under-the-radar. (One 'hero' I try to emulate in this regard being the peerless, late Peter York).

I write, I believe, the world's longest continually running blog by a solution salesperson.

No sixty-second Tiktok clips library, longform podcast guest appearances or blanket Instagram ad campaigning.


The point being, that when anyone who's found themselves thinking about their video call performance asks me about the subject, my specialism flows. I've skin in the game. Been there, seen it, done it, got the t-shirt. And can riff endlessly on all manner of options.

That is, I feel, in part how a true expert can be spotted and happily utilised.

How do your prospects pick up on your specialism?

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