The rise and fall of expert cultures…

One of the things I have talked about for many years is the rise of what I call the EXPERT culture. Where the experts rise to the top of a group, profession or company. They then stand around talking about how they got there. Someone says we need to train other people to climb this mountain and the experts build training.

And it fails.

Every single time.


Because experts aren’t good teachers, they are good at doing. They see exactly what they want to see and nothing else. It is why I use, leverage and loves John Boyd’s OODA loops; the feedback loops are there for a reason, TO PROVIDE FEEDBACK.

Hey, I understand expert cultures, I’ve built some over the years. One of the things that always makes me regret helping build the culture is the tipping point moment. Again, the moment the experts realize we have to help other people get to where we are. That tipping point moment frankly is where 90% of expert cultures fail. You can’t train unless you are an expert.

I see this often in the cloud world, certification becomes the expert shield (you must have this certification to sit at the table and be part of the conversation.

If you were to ask, I don’t to be part of the conversation.

The answer is sometimes in the minds of the experts, but getting that answer out of a locked PDF file makes everyone trying frustrated. The answer could be as simple as, let’s balance expertise with breadth. Let’s find a way to encompass other ways of looking at things.

In the past, I’ve presented an argument (and wrote a book about it) where the focus was on why crowdfunding has taken off. People aren’t as willing to sit, stew and wonder in the expert cauldron anymore. Companies and organizations don’t see that. So they reach that magical tipping point, and the glass shatters around them.

Training and Teaching are more about connection than knowledge. Teaching is the process of understanding the what and why of the learner’s current state. Understanding not ONLY the current state but a path forward that will be different from the teachers. Understanding the why of the student’s desire to learn.

Experts are critical members of any team, but they can’t be the ones driving the bus. They won’t pull over for people that take too long to get onboard!


just a drip under pressure..