Filed under: Zeitgeist
Would you call you clients experts in online?
Would they have spent 10,000 hours devoted to this understanding ?
How about you? Have you spent 10,000 hours?
Malcom Gladwell’s latest thinking in his book Outlier describes the conditions which bring about expertise. I think this can help shed light on why it can be so difficult to get an “I see. I agree” from a client.
It might be this experience lag- not an unwillingness to learn, not a love of another media channel, not an inability to grasp the concepts- that is preventing the uninitiated from embracing new ideas.
The biggest misconception about success is that we do it solely on our smarts, ambition, hustle and hard work. There’s an awful lot more that goes into it than we admit.
This idea - that excellence at a complex task requires a critical, minimum level of practice – surfaces again and again in studies of expertise. In fact, researchers have settled on what they believe is a magic number for true expertise: 10,000 hours.
You couldn’t say that it was a rocket science style observation that practice makes perfect, and that concentrated diligence on a task goes a long way to achieve mastery. For me the question is: how can you get people to understand new ideas when the experience gap is so large?
Cramming. The answer has to be: Tutor. Tutor. Tutor. You have to give your clients experience. So that they can get your experience. They won’t have time to practice.
“People don’t rise from nothing,” he writes. “They are invariably the beneficiaries of hidden advantages and extraordinary opportunities and cultural legacies that allow them to learn and work hard and make sense of the world in ways others cannot … It is only by asking where they are from that we can unravel the logic behind who succeeds and who doesn’t.”
You need to be the beneficiary for your clients, build extraordinary opportunities, be the hidden advantage to their success and help make sense of the world in the way that others can’t.
“We’ve been far too focused on the individual—on describing the characteristics and habits and personality traits of those who get furthest ahead in the world. And that’s the problem,” says Gladwell. “Because in order to understand the outlier I think you have to look around them—at their culture and community and family and generation. We’ve been looking at tall trees, and I think we should have been looked at the forest.”
Do more than look at the forest for the seeds of success. Plant one.
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