I Have A Dream

Please forgive me for borrowing the famous words by Martin Luther King. I’m not sure it’s my doing. After citing scripture in yesterday’s Brilliance nugget – “we have not because we ask not” – this morning, I woke up with “I have a dream.” It was only 4 am, and I would have loved to get another couple of hours of sleep. But that wasn’t meant to be. I was already writing this nugget in my head, and I couldn’t stop thinking about it and get back to sleep.

So, here it is: I have a dream! Remember I recently introduced you to a new planet which I named Brillonia? It is a planet where civilization as a whole makes much better use of its citizen’s brilliance. That is their expertise, experience, and wisdom. They leverage it better than most of us do on Earth. They also protect it by capturing it into a system that ensures this brilliance will be there forever.

They know that in doing those two things – leveraging and protecting – they also constantly improve what they are doing.

They know that brilliance developed and held in someone’s brain is invisible to others. Only little chunks of it usually are shared here and there. The big, cohesive picture this brilliance could paint never is seen by anyone – not even by the person who has that brilliance themselves! Wow, that was an amazing revelation! But by pulling that brilliance out of a person, others can see it, use it and give input. And the person themselves? Well, they can embrace their brilliance in a whole new way.

Bring the Brillonian Philosophy To Earth

I have a dream. We bring that Brillonian philosophy to Earth. We don’t need to wait until we have developed spaceships to bring a subset of us to Brillonia. Everyone has brilliance right here on Earth.

I dream that we all will get comfortable with the idea that our brilliance matters. And, more fundamental than that, that you have it in the first place. I know, I know. Brilliance is a term we usually use for people like Einstein. But we also use it for precious things like diamonds. Ideal diamonds reflect ALL the light that enters them. In contrast, black holes swallow all the light that is near them.

As a society, we treat our brilliance haphazardly. Experts are a lot closer to acting like black holes than diamonds in our current model. We hold it tightly to our chests as if we didn’t matter anymore after sharing the brilliance we have accumulated so far. It is a hidden scarcity thinking.

The reality is: We take way too much of our brilliance to the grave. Furthermore, we must empty our brilliance cup a bit, so we have room (time) to think of new things. Otherwise, we spend a lot of our time managing day in, and day out the things we already thought of.

Shifting From the Outdated Expert 1.0 Model To The New Expert 2.0 Model

I dream that we will shift from our old, outdated model of how to be an expert to a new, updated model. Let’s call that a shift from Expert 1.0 to Expert 2.0.

Expert 1.0 spends much time getting good at something and gets paid well for executing that work. As the expert’s career progresses, they supervise more people but share only the expertise needed at the moment. The sharing happens person-to-person. Much of the brilliance never gets documented anywhere. It is in the expert’s heads, and some bits get transferred to others through person-to-person training. When a trained person leaves, the transfer has to start all over again. When someone leaves unexpectedly, there is often a painful loss of expertise which we sometimes call “brain drain.”

Expert 1.0 also starts and grows businesses. When it is time to transfer them, that is often quite tricky, and in many cases, it is impossible. Why? Because the owner built the business with themselves as the hub and none of the spokes (the others) know enough to keep it going well.

My dream is Expert 2.0 will emerge – everywhere! In businesses, in non-profits, in public service … everywhere.

Expert 2.0 teaches their brilliance to others on an ongoing basis. Yes, of course, they pick and choose whom they teach. I’m not talking about abolishing rewards for innovative entrepreneurs. Yet, we must stop the silly waste of our brilliance. Expert 2.0 trains people smarter with training systems that leverage, preserve, and improve. They are living, breathing, and adaptable knowledge assets.

Everyone Needs To Learn How To Extract and Capture Their Brilliance

My dream is that everyone will learn how to extract and capture their brilliance. Shed the handcuffs that come with being Expert 1.0. Instead, let’s use your brilliance to its full potential. Allow yourself to see your brilliance in a new light (pun intended). Allow others to see it, give input and make it even better. Preserve it for others who come after you.

It is my dream that everyone will have access to how to do this in a manageable and enjoyable way!

Businesses see the tremendous ROI this has.

Non-profits realize they need it too – too often, a few key people do most of the work and get burned out. Then there is a massive gap in the organization when they leave. Instead, in my dream, non-profits seek a sponsor to help them learn how to do this better, more sustainably.

People in public service need Expert 2.0 as well for the same reasons.

Okay, now that I wrote down the dream, maybe I can get another hour of sleep?!?

I’m Curious

What do you think of this dream?

Live Brilliantly,

Dr. Stephie

P.S.: I appreciate you commenting and sharing this Brilliance Nugget with others. Thank you!

Stephie Althouse

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