Sunday, May 9, 2010

What makes Expert - Matt.Traxinger

Today I read the following post from Mr. Matt.Traxinger and really impressed with it…

The what is not nearly as important as the why.
Obviously the most important part of being an expert is understanding what you're doing. Don't get that confused with knowing what you're doing. Just because you can perform the lab exercises in the functional and technical manuals with your eyes closed doesn't mean you're an expert. Knowing how to run Adjust Cost, even knowing what it does, is not the same as understanding why it needs to be run.

It's not what you know, it's who you know
If you know what every button, every object, and every line of code in the system does then congratulations. You should either be billing 2000 hours a year and making a six-figure salary or running your own solution center. It's important to remember that in an application as big as NAV you're never going to know it all. Even Microsoft MVPs and senior level professionals have questions sometimes. That's not to say that you shouldn't strive to learn as much as possible, but you should have a place, or better yet, specific people that you can bounce questions off of. Speaking from experience, it's not easy to learn when you don't have anyone to help you. If you need a place to start, I highly

Love what you do
I've developed in my fair share of languages: Basic, C, C++, Java, Jython, C#, SmallTalk, Lisp, just to list the more well known ones. I've built windows applications, web sites, all sorts of things. I have to say, though, that I absolutely love being an ERP developer. If I spent my days writing OS and device driver code I would go insane. Whenever people ask me what I do, it's basically a conversation ender: Computer Programmer (I boil it down to a term they should be familiar with). Little do they know they're missing out on so much fun. I can't imagine doing anything different. If you don't feel the same way about what you do, then you should find something you do love. Don't spend your time trying to become an expert in something you don't want to do.

If you can't put the things you know into words (that includes speaking, writing, coding, and anything else that involves knowledge transfer) then you cannot be considered an expert. The purpose of becoming an expert is not just to hoard everything you've learned, but to turn that knowledge into practical, useful tools. More importantly, your knowledge should be used to make other more knowledgeable. Think back to when you were the junior developer, wanting to succeed, but not knowing where to start. The ability to help others will only make you more successful.

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