Avoid the dead end of expertise

I've been honoured to work with many colleagues who know their craft inside out. But these experts have a challenge—to keep seeking new ways. As we practice our craft, we get to know more and more about the best ways to get the work done. A constant cycle of higher value in less time. We're often recognized for our specialties, and who doesn't enjoy being a recognized authority.

After a while, we perform by rote—and that's when the trouble starts.

When we're on autopilot, we're not innovating anymore. We stop seeking better techniques and cease to hone our craft.

We get disrupted. Polaroid invented instant and Kodak built the first digital camera in 1975. But someone else shipped a better way and they are no more.

The healthy expert never loses their growth mindset. The harder it gets to be inquisitive, the more they double down. The more they have to lose, the more they try to disrupt themselves.

Avoiding your dead end

Your challenge this week is to identify the basic need that your expertise—or your business's expertise—fulfills for your customer. Then think of five other ways that they could get that same fulfillment.

If you had to reinvent yourself, what would you do next?

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