Tell what you know more, and sell what you’ve already told

I found out about a doctoral dissertation about “short term profit vs long-term expertise”, via this article. So someone else, to be exact Siw Marita Fosstenløkken, already wrote about what I had dreamed of writing about. 

Now I ask myself: is there a cutting edge one could add to her research? How do we need to rethink with her insights, think further…?

1. What I learned

I really liked the idea of classifying consultancies and communication agencies as professional service providers. Nice term – really nails it. What’s their service? Knowledge + workforce.

2. The cutting edge

Could it be “how much influence does expertise have in external communication to customers”? Is the lack of expertise of these professional service providers a real concern to potential customers? What is more important: the references or topic-oriented innovation / knowledge?

Shouldn’t this be more openly communicated:

  • a low fluctuation rate= positive
  • “Our knowledge is not only project-based – we’re out in the market, in the academic field – but we also don’t lose our sense of reality – we keep our routinely manner and our A level employees”

The open source dilemma

But in order to show that we value expertise – and we do it for real, not like our competitors – we would need to publish quite a lot of knowledge. We need to prove that we invest in this field. But wouldn’t we give away everything? And here we come to the usual open source dilemma: once you open source it, you can’t sell it.


  • everyone uses your stuff –> reputation.
  • people are too lazy to take your stuff one step further and hire you as a consultant to do that for them.

That’s at least what Don Tapscott and Anthony D. Williams argue in Wikinomics.

BTW: Good question for the next blog post: Is expertise identical to knowledge?


1 Comment

Filed under Billability

One response to “Tell what you know more, and sell what you’ve already told

  1. Nice writing style. Looking forward to reading more from you.

    Chris Moran

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