BE KIND ENOUGH TO SHARE WHAT YOU KNOW
By Victor Uyanwanne
Some people think they don’t know so much about anything to be able to teach it to other people. But that’s probably not true. I believe there is always something you know that someone else close-by or afar off may not know, which he may need to know in order to lead a better, healthier and happier life.
Don’t wait until you become an expert before you can begin to share what you know with other people who may need your knowledge. What we often don’t realise, is that no matter how little we know, there is always someone we know much better than who will be interested in what we know. So sharing your so-called ‘little’ knowledge will no doubt be of help to such people.
Nobody will know much if everybody waited to become certified experts before they began to share what they knew . It will not be kind to withhold useful information that someone might need simply because you think you are not an expert yet. So I am of the opinion that sharing what you know with people that need it will not be a bad idea. You will be surprised how much it will improve the quality of lives of people around you.
If we relate with the right kind of people, we will get the right kind of information at relatively no cost.
Sharing what you know can enable people make better decisions that will improve their lives. As I began to think about writing this article, I mentioned to a colleague in the office that during the break hour I would go see an ophthalmologist whose eye clinic was on retainership with our company. The place is located about 3 kilometres away from our upscale office location.
“Why go all that distance,” asked the colleague, “when there is a good one right on our street here”?
“Really? I didn’t I know that!” I enthused. Following my colleague’s suggestion, I simply walked only about 100 meters to get to the eye-clinic he mentioned. As it turned out, and to my pleasant surprise, I got an excellent service from there. That little information volunteered by my colleague saved me the stress of having to drive down a farther distance along a vehicular traffic prone area on that hot afternoon.
When I returned to my desk in the office, I thanked my colleague for the information and also quipped, “The quality of decision one makes depends on the quality of information available to one.” Without wasting time my colleague replied me, “The quality of information one gets depends on the quality of questions one asks”. A third colleague overheard our discussion and also added his voice, “Good quality information costs money, so you have to pay for this one….” We all shared a good laugh over all this.
Besides helping you in clarifying or improving your own knowledge, sharing your knowledge and experiences in life can make life better for someone else, near or afar off.
Well, to be honest, it is true that getting good quality information might cost money, but not necessarily all the time. If we relate with the right kind of people, we will get the right kind of information at relatively no cost. That’s the reason it will be appropriate to commit to sharing what you know so that others can benefit from you.
I don’t know about you, but as for me, I enjoy sharing useful information with people that need it. However I must admit that it is not always as easy as it may seem, especially when I don’t get the kind of positive feedback as I might rightly expect. I don’t mean to scare you here, but I believe getting you reminded that you might be criticized for sharing what you know may help you handle the challenges whenever they begin to come.
What you know now that you refuse to share may be what someone needs to hear to open his eyes to a brighter world than he is right now.
I am sure your background, education, training and experiences in life have afforded you the opportunity of knowing some things that someone else around may not necessarily know. Besides helping you in clarifying or improving your own knowledge, sharing your knowledge and experiences in life can make life better for someone else, near or afar off. Sometimes, you may not be able to go all out to do that, but giving little tips here and there as the need arises could be of immense help to someone.
“How do I start?”, you may ask. Here are a few suggestions to assist you:
• Be willing to be a teacher – you don’t have to be in a classroom setting to do that. Anywhere you find yourself where someone lacks a particular kind of useful knowledge you possess is a good point to begin. People can do things better if they have better tips made available to them. What you know now that you refuse to share may be what someone needs to hear to open his eyes to a brighter world than he is right now.
• Answer useful questions – when someone asks you to explain a concept you know or give information that may be of help to them, be kind and humble enough to do it. A local proverb in Nigeria says that “He who asks questions will never miss his way.” So if someone is humble enough to seek your knowledge by asking you appropriate questions, please be kind enough to answer them.
• Be ready to guide people – there are many people who want to know how you got where you are right now, or how you achieved what you have achieved. If such people want to be like you, please show them the way. “We see farther when we stand on the shoulders of those who have gone before us.” More so sharing what you know does not decrease your knowledge stock. Isn’t that good pretty obvious?
Use any other strategy that works for you in sharing what you know. It is a world of no limits. Just don’t hoard your knowledge.
• Document your useful experiences in life. Don’t carry your wealth of experience to the great beyond just like that. Write a useful book so others can read about it. Long after you are gone, you will still be speaking via your books.
• Start a blog. Write about what you know. Share your experiences, unique or not so unique, it matters less. Your blog will reach people even in other climes that you might never meet face to face.
• Create appropriate videos and post them on youtube for others to see. A number of times, I found some “how to…” videos on youtube to be very helpful. I remain grateful to all those who posted such knowledge sharing videos I have had course to access at one time or another.
• Use other social media like Facebook, twitter etc to reach out to people in your cycle and beyond. Share useful tips there. Write useful articles and post them. A number of times, some people have told me that my posts on my Facebook page really helped, inspired or encouraged them. I can say the same thing about what some people posted on their facebook walls that I accessed.
• Start a column in a local newspaper of your choice. Have you not noticed that people still read the traditional newspaper despite the internet revolution? Sharing what you know through this medium will sure reach people.
• Organize seminar or workshop if you can. This may cost you a bit, but the impact will surprise you.
• If necessary, prepare relevant audio CDs and distribute them. This way, people can gain knowledge listening to you.
• Do podcasting too if you can. Someone will be interested.
• Use any other strategy that works for you in sharing what you know. It is a world of no limits. Just don’t hoard your knowledge.