6 Secrets of Go-to Professionals – And How to Be One

We all have our go-tos — the people, places and things that we count on to give us what we want or need, when we want or need it. Whether it’s a colleague at work, the food at the local deli or a service professional who does exceptional work, they seem to have the special sauce that keeps you going back for more.

Delivering that kind of reliability and consistency may look easy, but often it’s a blend of knowledge, skill and experience that develops over time and is implemented with excellence. The good news: Go-to professionals engage in similar practices and share certain qualities that you can cultivate to become one yourself. Here are six secrets to their success.

Service. Thinking about the client or customer first — and what would make their experience as smooth, easy and positive as possible while providing the quality result they’re looking for — is a key component of a go-to person’s mindset. Being of service to someone else’s goal takes the focus off what they can get and, instead, puts it on what they can give. And they know that, ultimately, whatever they’re working on is not about them.

Solutions. Folks whose products or services are in demand see past problems. If they don’t already know how to resolve something or have an answer to a query, they will often find a way to provide a solution or help make a connection with the people or information that can do so.

Team-think. Go-to people know that very little happens without a team. They respect the roles and contributions of everyone on the team, trust that they are working with fellow professionals and are interested in getting to the best possible result together. Even solopreneurs or experts who tend to work alone have support around them in some way — or they interface with a client and are responsive to constructive feedback.

Respect. At the same time, they stay in their own lane. They know what their expertise is and isn’t. They may offer suggestions for how to improve a project or task, but they don’t try to do another team member’s job.

Flexibility. Needs shift, customers change their minds and plans change. With that understanding, go-to people don’t take things personally and adjust as needed to new information. They understand and create appropriate boundaries, but rarely do they offer a take-it-or-leave-it attitude.

Intuition. In addition to the knowledge and expertise they develop in their profession, go-to people learn how to utilize their intuition. Often they just have a sense of how to create a certain type of experience, and they may even anticipate what a client might want and do it before being asked. They also can tap into a client’s vision by listening well to a description of it, and they trust the internal nudges that come up suggesting which direction to go with an idea to bring the vision to fruition.

Consumers today have numerous options when it comes to choosing whom they’ll trust to provide a product or service. By cultivating the skills and traits of sought-after professionals, you may find that you become known as one, too.

Kristen Quirk

Kristen Quirk is a transformational coach who helps professionals and spiritual seekers explore what it means to know themselves better, love themselves more and share from the heart. Kristen hosts the Being and Doing Now podcast and blog, and she is passionate about continually finding ways to connect more deeply with life, humans, animals and nature.

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