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What It Means to Be an Expert [infographic]

To make yourself as attractive a job candidate as possible, you should always be looking for opportunities to pick up a new skill. That doesn't mean you have to attain expert status in order to catch the attention of a hiring manager. However, it's useful to get an idea of exactly what kind of investment you'd have to make, to be considered an expert by those in the know.


brains 

(Photo Credit: Hey Paul Studios/Flickr)

Online marketplace Zintro recently published an infographic detailing exactly what goes into developing expertise in a topic. If you're starting from scratch -- learning to code, picking up a language, or anything else -- here's what you need to know:

  • You probably have the capacity to pick up new knowledge in just about any field -- 95 percent of people do, according to Benjamin Bloom's Taxonomy of Educational Objectives: The Cognitive Domain.
  • Everyone learns differently. Understanding your learning style is essential, if you want to broaden your knowledge. (There are lots of interactive tools online to figure out yours, including this one.)
  • It takes 10,000 hours to become an expert in something, which sounds more daunting that it really is. If you spend 20 hours a week doing something for 10 years, you've put in your 10,000 hours. In other words, once you've been working at your career for a while, you're probably an expert in something. The goal is to figure out what it is.
  • The brain takes eight weeks to build new neural pathways. If you want basic competency in a new skill, set aside two months to get up to speed -- and be patient.

be an expert 

(See Larger Version at Zintro)

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