Many people claim to be experts of one type or another in their chosen field, but I find myself asking the question – what makes you an expert?

Usually a title is earned and bestowed upon you by a recognised source.  I can’t just claim to be a Professor or Lord can I?  So what gives anyone the right to claim the tag ‘expert’?

Of course for many of us the question equally valuable to ask is – why are they claiming me as an expert?  Is that the title I want to define me?

It seems to me, there is a lot of making it up as you go, for many so called experts.  I wonder if indeed that is the whole point of being an expert, you can write your own rules.

Where do all these questions lead me…well as a watcher of human behaviour I find myself interested to see how people gravitate towards the experts, almost without any real reference checks.  “He is the expert, how dare we question him.”

Great, so perhaps I should be marketing myself as an ‘expert’.

The question is what expectations really do come with this title, whether it be bestowed on you by an adoring market or self anointed?  I am not sure I have the answer as yet and I certainly welcome the discussion on the subject.  But maybe the answer is simple, in the interests of social marketing research I now declare myself to be an ‘expert’ – so let the herds start rushing towards me with requests to speak at a conference, or offer workshops and generally consult.

There is one final critical piece in the ‘expert’ puzzle – declare what you are the expert in.  So here I am, an ‘expert’ in ‘Communications and Marketing’ for the not–for-profit sector