- Development of expertise in your chosen field is critical for success whether you are a sole practitioner, a corporate worker or building a business from scratch.
- Building expertise in your chosen field is easier than ever before with the availability of online courses, video resources and other experts who are an email or phone call away.
- True expertise takes time, devotion and practice to achieve but can pay off by helping you achieve your professional and business goals.
Want to improve your expertise and professional skills? Of course, you do. It's one of the best ways to not only get ahead in your professional career, but it's a great way to improve your self-confidence.
The good news is that it's now easier than ever to accomplish this through the power of the internet. There is no longer a need to attend expensive classes or certification programs in your area. Thanks to the internet, anyone can pretty much learn how to do anything.
Below are three of the best ways to continue your education or hone your skills and expertise through online courses while documenting your success and connecting with others online.
Learn through online video courses.
The internet has made it extremely easy to learn anything through the use of online video. At the same time, such online learning courses are quite affordable and easy to access. Sites like Udemy, Skillshare and Lynda offer access to hundreds of thousands of online courses – some of which are free. There are many other online learning course websites, so if one provider doesn't have the tools or training you are looking for, you can always search through the offerings of another provider.
Start a website or blog and document the process.
A great way to document your progress and show off your expertise in the process is to start a website or blog of your own. Thanks to the power of WordPress, anyone can start a site in a matter of minutes and start posting content. In most cases, it's just a few dollars per month to set up hosting and a domain name for a website, but it's well worth the learning experience.
Reach out to industry experts for their expertise.
In addition to accessing online training materials and starting a site to document your progress, the internet has made it extremely easy to connect with other experts around the world. This, in itself, can be a huge learning experience and great for building new connections within your industry. The best tip here is to not be bashful, as it will take time and numerous personal emails to reach out to authorities in your niche. Such connections are usually made through contact forms on experts' websites or blogs, through social media and often with LinkedIn.
Improve your expertise and online skills to excel in your career.
It doesn't matter if you are working a 9-to-5 job, trying to climb the corporate ladder or simply an entrepreneur working from home, we all benefit from learning more and knowing how to do our jobs better. Be sure to take time to invest in each of the learning experiences above while also making yourself a more valued professional in the process.
How do you become an expert?
According to cognition consultants and psychologists William Sieck and Louise Rasmussen, "One convenient indicator often used in cognitive field research to decide whether someone is an expert is whether or not other people in their area endorse them as an expert. Researcher Giyoo Hatano documented what he referred to as "adaptive expertise," in which the expert (or super expert) can not only solve problems expertly but can also
- Adapt strategies for problem-solving in response to environmental changes
- Explain why some strategies work and others don't
- Distinguish between positive and negative changes to strategies
Consider specializing your area of expertise.
Whether you are an entrepreneur, a consultant or a corporate officer, being recognized as an expert in some aspect of your chosen field will enhance your achievements. If you are known as the "go-to" person for answers, people will seek you out. You won't have to spend time hunting down clients if they are lining up at your door. According to Brian Horn, author of the Personal Branding Blog, recognized expertise also allows you to charge more for your services and increase your authority and presence within the market.
By specializing, for example, in a subset of your chosen field, you will more easily concentrate not only on the development of your expertise but also on your marketing and branding focus. If you sell just apples, you can easily become an expert on apples. If you sell many varieties of fruits, it takes more time and effort to become expert in all fruits, and if you sell every food product imaginable, the universe of necessary knowledge to be expert in increases exponentially. It's better to be a recognized expert on apples than one in a crowd of people selling the buffet.