An “expert” is someone widely recognized as a reliable source of technique or skill whose faculty for judging or deciding rightly, justly, or wisely is accorded authority and status by their peers or the public.
A guru (Sanskrit: गुरु) is a person who is regarded as having great knowledge, wisdom and authority in a given area, and uses it to guide others. …….In a further Western metaphorical extension, guru is used to refer to a person who has authority because of his or her perceived secular knowledge or skills. In Malay, ‘guru’ literally means teacher.
Expertise comes with experience and knowledge on a given discipline. To become an expert, you must have the technical skills to be able to give good judgment and decisions on issues that will affect another person’s well-being, including his finances and health.
A guru will be able to guide you on techniques and skills which experts cannot because expert’s special knowledge limits them from agreeing with fields of study not of his kind. An analyst of market trends for example may not agree with his colleagues opinion of global inflation. A guru is a fascilitator between the student and his environment. Students are encouraged to explore and solve their own problems as part of his learning and growth process.
A ‘guru’ can easily become an ‘expert’ once he chooses to focus a field of study. However, not all experts want to become a ‘guru’ or teacher because it involves understanding what the student’s needs and work from that point of need.
An expert talks about his field of study at seminars and workshops, but rarely interacts with his audience. He imparts his knowledge and skill based on his understanding on the majority needs. When he is done, he attends to a few questions, clarifies doubts about his subject and leaves.
A teacher speaks to his students and discuss issues or problems the students are facing. Sometimes, a teacher can be a dictator because he believes his systems of understanding a process will lead to more positive results.
How To Spot The Difference Between A Teacher and An Expert?
You can find teachers in schools and at home. The teachers in schools are given the duty to help you with the process of learning and growing which teachers at home, your parents, are not able to provide. Both groups of teachers serve the same purpose of acting as fascilitators between you as the student and the environment. They say you cannot choose who your parents are. However, kids are subjects to parents’ decisions on which schools they will attend and consequently the teachers they will be learning from.
A teacher rarely brushes you off when you raise your hands to ask questions when class is in session. He wants their students to ask because it demonstrates improved listening skills or attentiveness to the class. The discipline of gurus and teachers stems from their sworn oath of allegiance to a higher calling that is to serve the innermost desire of the students’ need to grow from within.
If a guru does not agree with you or find you are going the wrong way in the learning process, he is patient, attentive and able to persevere with firmness and integrity without breaking your spirit of learning.
An expert however, tends to says things like “let me attend to you later during the break,” instead of saying, “if you have any questions, please note them, I will attend to them before you leave, in the meantime, here is how you can reach me” The worst kind of expert is the one who leaves you with a no-reply address, makes you get in queue for a ticket.
Somehow, people still follow the crowd, rather than follow the teacher, they follow the expert. The reason is it is never the calling of teachers to give solutions on a plate and spoonfeed the students. Students must do it themselves. Programmes from experts tend to look like a complete solution to your problems and answers your questions, but the difference is you may or may not repeat the process these experts have provided to solve your problem. Besides, since it is already given you to you on a plate, there is no learning process and when there is no learning process involved, no knowledge is constructed. In the end, you must return to the expert for further consultation.
A fish in hand does not make one a fisherman.
An expert’s advice has to be valued with your existing knowledge and then you decide if his consultation is worth paying for. More often, experts send out messages that the solutions are preliminary and you have to return for further tests or he refers you to another specialist or expert for follow up consultations. And that means more money to be spent. An expert expects you to work in synergy with his professional position. You cannot get emotional when your own opinions and methods of doing things contradict. Do not expect an expert to differ his opinions on a subject he knows a lot of.
Take great sportsmen, say Tiger Woods, Sachin Tendulkar, etc. They all have coaches. These coaches dont play as well as their students but it is their coaching that helped these sportsmen gain that extra edge.
I wrote this post because a friend approaches me about buying ebooks from “expert guru”. He had spent $100/- and later discovered it is about setting up a blog. To learn more, he has to buy into more ebooks. Which means more money. It is ok to buy into experts books, no problem. The most impotant thing to understand what sort of user we are before buying. In some subject matters, we need teachers and in others, we must use an expert.
Very interesting topic and excellent article!
Unfortunately I have come across many more experts than gurus in my lifetime. My education was sadly lacking in any form of “guru-ism”.
It was only really when I started self-development that I became to exposed to the guru-type experience.
I think that I missed out on a great deal by not having that more questioning space to grow in my life.
Hi, great to have you on line.
To have the experience with experts does actually support the construction of knowledge and appreciate the natural laws of development of life skills at the conscious levels. Think of it as working from outside in, meeting the inner teacher.
Kids tend to work from inside out, and noticeably will not listen to either gurus or experts as their need are intrinsic. It helps to have teachers around to fasciliate their growth as a result, not an expert.
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I had to read your post twice to get the full impact of it. I appreciate reading what you have to say. It’s too bad that more people do not comprehend the benefits of coaching. Keep up the good work.
–, I am very thankful to this topic because it really gives useful information ..-
Thank you for your comment. I didn’t realise how critical I was till I read it again today. Just telling the truth. The word ‘coach’ is appropriate for the western experts than the word ‘guru’.