Share What You Know

Share What You Know

A week ago, my family moved from our home in Chicago, where the view from our windows looked like this,

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to southeast Michigan, where the view from our back deck looks like this. Michigan

After one week in our new home, I am happy to report that we’ve unpacked most of the boxes. And, thanks to the help of extended family nearby, we have also checked a number of projects off our to-do list.

One of those projects: replacing a few electrical outlets. I had assumed we would need to hire a professional for that one; wiring is not in my skill set, nor in my husband’s.

But my husband’s uncle, who has helped out around our home for two days this week, has built his own house, so he volunteered to work on the outlets AND he taught my husband a few things about electric circuits.

This is a long introduction to a post with a simple message: Leaders who develop others’ capacity share what they know.

The trick to sharing what you know is being very clear about what your skill set is so that you know what you have to offer to others. Once you know what you know, you can start to give that knowledge away to others, helping them to learn and develop.

Take a moment to think about it. What are the five things you know the most about? The things we know best are the easiest ones to pass on to others. Teaching them to others feels natural and requires little advance preparation.

You can share what you know in a formal way, as a teacher, mentor, or coach; or you can share what you know informally, the way my husband’s uncle did — along the way, as you go, as a matter of course. In both cases, sharing what you know is most successful when it happens in the context of trusting relationships.

Join the conversation:

What are some of the things you know best?

How do you share them with others?

This was originally posted at Mountain State University LeaderTalk and is re-posted with permission. 

Filed As:  teaching, LeaderTalk

About Becky Robinson

I am the owner of Weaving Influence and the leader of the Weaving Influence team. We help authors and thought leaders grow their online influence. I am also a wife and mom of three daughters, and I enjoy running, reading, writing, a good cup of coffee, and dark chocolate.

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What People Are Saying

  • Becky,
    First of all, as a fellow Michigander, I say “Welcome to Michigan!” So glad to hear that the move went well and that you are already settling in. That’s fantastic.
    To your question—what do I know and how do I share it? Well, for starters, I guess I know something about social media that many of my counterparts here in Grand Rapids still don’t. It’s baffling to me, but every time I attend a meeting, I’m constantly drawn into conversations about social media. Many people are still skeptical and don’t see the application to their businesses. So, how do I share information to help them grow?
    1. I’ve created some templates and standard forms that I share with colleagues who connect with me via various social media platforms. For example, when I accept a LinkedIn invitation and the person clearly is new on LI, when I accept the invite, I send some pointers embedded in my “Thanks for Linking In” reply to them.
    2. I speak on the topic of social media for small business owners. Even while emphasizing that I am *not* a social media guru, my story resonates with people. I just did a preso this week that was well-received. Here’s a link w/reference materials that I created for the presentation: https://jennifervmiller.com/social-media-dining-guide/ . Judging by the number of email responses and RT’s on Twitter, it’s striking a chord with people.
    The take-away for me in all of this is that even though I don’t perceive myself as an “expert” in the topic of social media, I still know a lot more than others. If I’m willing to share it, then it helps people. It’s wasteful to hold back because I’m concerned that I won’t be 100% correct about the content.

  • This article reiterates the essential practice of EFFECTIVE networking, where structure and facilitation teach one to share their needs, communicate their skill sets, and develop relationships. Until these practices become behavior, business owners cannot grow a valuable customer or client base, in person or with SM – loved the article, thanks for sharing!

  • What an interesting question to ponder – “What do I know best?” To come up with the list, I thought about this past week. What conversations have I had with others that were ‘teachable moments’ and I was able to pass along knowledge or insight that really helped someone else. My answers are simple (and it makes me wonder if I overcomplicate things in my training if it was this simple.) So here goes:
    1. No one has to appoint you a leader. You get to decide and can act as a leader day in and day out without a formal title.
    2. Being a mom and a high level business professional is tough. You will have to make tough choices sometimes – the mom part should always win – the time we are blessed with the kids passes quickly.
    3. To be successful in business (whether you are in a direct sales role or not) means having to constantly focus on the WiifT – What’s in it for THEM. The more you communicate, act and live with the WiifT mindset, the more successful you will be.
    4. The key to WiifT is undertanding others communication needs and then adapting your communication to it. Though each human being is very individual, there are tools and assessments that can help us with the understanding and ‘how to’ of doing this well.
    5. I also know that everyone needs a ‘coach’ in life and business. It can be a spouse, friend, colleague or anyone. And that each of us can coach others by paying attention, giving them time and attention and sharing ‘what we know best’ when appropriate.
    Looking forward to ready about more ‘knows bests’ from other readers.

  • What I know best is how to be resilient. After spend my entire childhood in my parents’ hometown, surrounded by people who knew and loved me and our family, I went out of state to college. I made the assumption that I would settle down in that city…forever.
    WRONG. My husband and I moved our family 18 times in 43 years of marriage.
    What I learned in all of those transitions were skills such as flexibility, how to make friends quickly, non-judgmentalism, and the ability to seek out the positive outcomes in painful circumstances.
    Many of my opportunities for learning, growing and serving others came in the midst of making a fresh start in a new community. And my empathy for people and systems going through change was a vital skill in ministry, in business consulting, and now in teaching and mentoring.
    I look forward to continuing to share what I have learned from life with others who face uncertainty and uprooting.

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