Do you want (or need) some help? Are you looking for an expert to help you?
How do you decide who’s right for you?
Here are the three main general questions to answer before choosing:
Did they personally have a similar problem that they managed to solve?
Did they solve similar problems for others?
How knowledgeable are they in the subject matter?
I have listed these in the order of importance we tend to give them.
It seems logical to think that number 1 above is the best choice. Someone who already experienced the same setback - and managed to overcome it, must have the “secret” to solving your problem. Personal experience is also attractive because there’s an affinity.
The second best decision would be to find someone who solved similar problems for others. They have a “formula” for your kind of problem.
The last option is to have someone with a lot of knowledge in the field to try and solve the problem. Even though they don’t have any particular experience with your problem, their knowledge will help find a solution.
How come the end result is often disappointing?
What do you do when you have a headache that persists over days or weeks?
You don’t search for a doctor that himself had such headaches and managed to cure them. You might seek the help of a headache specialist, but most probably you’ll go to your family doctor.
So why do the exact reverse with your other problems?
For most situations, you need to reverse the order of importance of the answers.
Yes, if you find a specialist that had the exact same problem as you, their solution would have a high chance of being the right solution for you too. But that’s rare because almost no two situations are actually the same.
A better choice would be to seek advice from someone who has dealt with many similar situations. They will not have a very specific “secret” solution, but many more general ones.
Often, what seems to be one kind of problem may actually be another problem. Someone with a formulaic solution would be stumped if they discover your problem is different. (And they might not even realize it's a different kind of problem. When you only have a hammer, everything looks like a nail.)
Your best choice - in most cases - is the third one, an expert widely and deeply knowledgeable.
They can do two things the other types of advisor can’t:
Use their deep and wide knowledge to create a specific solution to your particular problem.
Diagnose the problem in such a way that would direct you to the right advisor for the specific solution - if that’s better for you.
Reverse the order of importance. In most cases, you should be looking for:
An expert with deep and wide knowledge - framework, methods, tools. Especially if they themselves developed them. That’s your best choice if you want successful results. They can create a tailored solution to your particular problem.
An advisor with experience in similar problems. Only if you are sure your problem is actually in the expert’s field of experience.
Someone who had the exact same problem and came up with a specific solution - but only if it’s the exact same problem.
Finding someone who combines all three attributes would be your best option. Unfortunately, that is very very rare.
Would you like Haim to help you?