Please, Go Deep Not Wide
A Jack Of All Trades & A Master Of None!
Stop hedging, stop putting your feet in both camps, stop saying you’re an expert at everything
Go Deep, Not Wide!
Depth in our work should come naturally for us consultants/advisors.
After all, we should be fascinated, I mean we should love what we do and it therefore shouldn’t take much for us to dive deeper and deeper into something we love.
And yet, when it comes to marketing ourselves, selling our profession, suddenly we hedge again. We’re suddenly doing the exact opposite.
We become so concerned we’ll leave money on the table that we water down what is most powerful about what we do:
THE EXPERTISE, RELATIONSHIPS & TRUST THAT COMES FROM DEVOTING OUR WAKING HOURS TO OUR NICHE — OUR EXPERTISE!
It’s Safer To Generalise?
“It’s a numbers game” we’ve always been told, which in my world translates to “mud throwing” — throw enough at the wall and some of it will stick!
It just doesn’t work for me. If a job is worth doing, it’s worth doing well. Don’t take on the job if you’re not going to give it all you’ve got. Don’t stop until you cross the finish line.
I remember it was in 2007, I was invited to a dinner party in Geneva and I knew no one except the host who had shown interest in a real estate development that I was doing in the Indian Ocean and I needed to get to know him better. After the usual pre-dinner cocktail chat with him, he invited me to sit down and had placed me next to a large and loud gentleman (not too gentle, to be honest!). I took a deep breath and took the dive to enjoy the experience.
He was so loud, all consuming and I could feel the judgmental eyes upon us as he regaled his somewhat boastful stories of how he had started a double-glazing sales business, built it, sold it and move to Switzerland. But, as I listened and interrogated further, I began to see through the bravado and saw a very intelligent man with a heart of gold and surprisingly enough for a double-glazing salesman, some good old fashioned values.
One thing stood out for me, when he said “it’s not a numbers game, it’s about changing your skills, improving your results and doing everything physically possible to deliver to the relationships you have built”
He had built his business from zero and sold it for approximately $50 million by becoming a master craftsman in what he did.
It takes time to be an expert at what you do, to go deeper rather than wider.
It’s easy to lose your nerve when the work isn’t coming your way, but I know staying true to the cause, no matter how niche, will bring you the returns you want.
After all, it’s very hard to trust a generalist!
We’ve become accustomed to getting any specialized service or experience we want delivered to our doorstep and consulting is no different.
Depth and specialisation is just the admission ticket, execution is the game!
There’s no point being an expert, if no one knows about it.
You need to be out there, sharing all your expertise. In today’s multi-media, multi-channel and collaborative world, you need to share your expertise with the world. And when the world starts to listen and it puts faith in you, you need to deliver collaboratively.
There’s really no such thing as IP in the internet enabled world. Knowledge and IP are commodities; it’s your skills to execute the work that’s the real match winning talent that pays.
In becoming an expert in your niche, you build a methodology that can be scaled at some point in the future in other niches. Your opportunity to evolve, to widen your business comes later, only when you’ve built your recipe for success.
When we look at Amazon today as the “go too place” for almost everything, we should remember not so long ago, they were the experts in books only. They built a methodology, a “fool proof” step by step recipe for business success and scaled it to other areas.
Depth, not breadth. The single-minded focus builds great business people.
My world is New Product Innovation enablement through Product Innovation Platforms, Product Lifecycle Management and Smart Manufacturing
I enjoy working with the very best talent from around the world, helping them achieve their customer, project or personal career goals.
Love to hear from you, be it good, bad or indifferent — whatever it may be, communication solves everything.