It is quite obvious!
The more experienced you are in any given subject, the better it is for you as a business. It’s one of the sole reasons why a client may pick you over another but does being an expert really mean that much?
Several big brand name brands became leaders without being experts. These businesses had credibility and typically they would have played to their expertise in order to remain a big name brand. What they actually did was take a risk and play to their weaknesses instead.
Here’s a few examples :
Sony & the Playstation:
Sony built its empire as experts in audio technology releasing futuristic products such as the transistor radio and the game changing Walkman but their biggest success is something that the founding owners probably never dreamed of; The Playstation.
Sony went up against established brands such as Nintendo and Sega with no prior experience in the gaming industry and won!
Apple & the Ipod:
Apple had a pretty good name for themselves in the US but it was near non-existent in the UK unless you were a creative. Apple hadn’t developed a pure audio product before but it took a risk and designed, produced and launched the ipod within the space of a year and became the hit we all know but Apples biggest product today is not their computers or the Ipod but the Iphone which was again a product which they really had no experience with.
Samsung Electronics Phone:
To prove that its not all about tech startups, in 1938 Samsung opened as a small trading company producing its own noodles. 76 years later, Samsung still dabble in pretty much everything but have managed to become leaders in electrical devices, most notably their line of phone models which are quite different from noodles.
Quite possibly the most creative or greedy company of our time, googles only expertise was creating a search engine, albeit a ground breaking one. They actually had little or no experience in much else but have become leaders in marketing, electrical devices, software and pretty much anything they want to.
I’ve asked the question as to whether being an expert is really that important and based on the above it would seem like it’s not but in reality these companies hired experts to make these risks rewarding.
From what I can conclude, you don’t have to be an expert to create a successful business. What you need to do is:
1. Hire experts
2. Take risks
4. Predict and follow trends
Personally, I think you should become an expert but what I also think is that you shouldn’t be afraid to open your mind and try something else.