Never in history have we created so much information that is so readily accessible by so many as we are now experience. In fact, most of us are faced with
the overwhelming amount of information at our finger did is. We have all moved on from the Industrial Age and are now well entrenched in the Information
There are those who suggest that information is the true force of power that provides government and corporations the ability to control our destinies.
Information in itself is of little value.It is how this information is analysed, interpreted and applied that creates knowledge and it is this knowledge
that gives you real.
As individuals, we have so much potential with our ability to access so much information in all its varying forms. Not restricted by access to printed
material alone, the internet provides us with access to text, images, videos and streaming media. We are provided with search engines that index every
word and image to help us find the information we seek.
The challenge we face however with all this information, is first of all, how to distinguish what is fact from fiction; what is real from what is perceived.
The great realisation however that stems from all of this is that we soon discover how much more information there is to learn in order that we may
truly understand what we have learnt and transforming this into knowledge.
Life is becoming more complex. The depth of skills and knowledge required for much of what is done by so many is becoming more demanding. The systems and
everyday tools we use to manage our businesses and personal lives now require us to access and process more information every minute of the day. Everyone
is trying to be more efficient with the new systems and processes to collect, collate and manage more information quicker than before.
In technology-based industries, this challenge is even more pronounced.Facts that once held true have now been discarded with new knowledge even before
they have the opportunity of being widely understood . Keeping abreast of the changes itself is an ongoing challenge.
We ae also seeing the rise of a new breed of experts and consultants, many lacking any formal education in their fields of expertise. We are witnesses
to new "professions" where people set themselves up as being advisers and experts in a wide range of esoteric disciplines. The world is fast filling
with a new breed of “spin doctors” all promoting someone else’s products in their name. I sometimes think we have a tribe of chiefs with no Indians
– everyone is out there as the experts.
Those seeking guidance or expert opinion find themselves very often misled in the belief that these experts can help them. In fact, many have done little
more than learn from ill-informed resources themselves. Much of what they pass on has failed to be substantiated or kept current stop
There is also a growing trend of groups who set themselves up selling services for what are currently popular or topical trends in business. Typically
these are set up as affiliate programs where someone develops a product and everyone else sells that product in their own name without any real level
of expertise in the product. They sell pipe dreams and silver bullet solutions for overpriced fees delivering generally, material of questionable worth
or that is invariably outdated. Businesses need to be very wary. Use of established consultants and professionals can be very valuable to any organisation.These
people maintain a regime of ongoing education from qualified sources, testing and applying what they learned to gain practical application skills.
Knowledge is not acquired in a classroom alone.Learning is not a process performed in isolation from other knowledge and experience.It
takes time and investment by the person acquiring knowledge and the humility to recognise what they don't know.
Yes we can, as consultants and advisers, possess considerable knowledge of worth.Are we experts?For most, bar a
few exceptions, no we are not experts.We have a degree of expertise in selected aspects of our profession.We
still however have so much more to learn in order that we may understand what we do know and more importantly what we yet still have to learn.