Tag Archives: SME

The Need For A Mentor

“Surround yourself with those smarter than you.” I’ve heard variants of this saying many times in various venues. Sometimes it was narrowly focused – “you are a new boot and don’t know anything so listen to senior officers” – and other times it was more focused on learning as much as possible from others. A post a few years back on another forum got me to rethink events like tradeshows – NTOA, SHOT, etc. The poster (Moose) summarized how the show wasn’t about what new stuff was out, but about the contacts and informal learning opportunities.   Finding Subject Matter Experts – SME, is important. When someone is qualified to talk about a subject, they are worth learning from. However, just because they are qualified to talk about X, doesn’t mean their opinions on Y and Z are valid. Neither does it mean that their opinions on Y and Z are not valid. This is where you have to find more than one SME to look at for information. How do you determine if a prominent figure in the industry is a SME? By comparing their claims to evidence, facts, openness about who/what they are, and if there statements match

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