What is an effective strategy for working with individuals who have very little experience in a specific domain (they may be experts in their own domain), but still reject input from a subject matter expert (SMEs)? These individuals don't know enough about the specific domain to recognise that they're adopting a flawed approach, but still reject the advice from an individual recognised within the company as an SME believing that they know better.
It seems to be a textbook case of colleagues demonstrating the Dunning-Kruger effect.
I'm asking the question from the perspective that I'm the SME, and a poor outcome by the other employee who ignores my recommendations will reflect poorly on me when management finds out what has happened.
Please note that I'm not referring to instances where there are competing objectives (timing vs accuracy vs company politics), but instances where taking the SME's advice is unambiguously advantageous for the company.
Edit: I've removed the examples as some responses were focusing on the minute details about what was/wasn't said in each example rather than on the higher level question. Without making the question several pages long it is not possible to provide every relevant detail in each example.
A more generic example of the behaviour (which highlights the benefits of Kevin's solution):
- Employee: I am going to do action X. I'm required to discuss this with you because you're the SME for this work stream.
- SME: I can see some ways to improve X, maybe if we implemented actions Y or X+Y we would get a better outcome.
- Employee: No, action Y is wrong/not necessary, I'm only going to do X.
- SME: Some reasons you may like to consider action Y are (...)
- Employee: Action Y is still not necessary. Action X solves the problem.
- SME: I can help you implement Y alongside X if that would help.
- Employee: Your advice about action Y is wrong. I don't need help implementing my solution action X.
The three solutions I've seen employed in the past are:
- SME escalates his/her solution to the employee's manager, sidestepping the employee and making clear that the SMEs advice was not followed. This can come across as passive aggressive and begs the question why the issue couldn't be solved before it was escalated.
- SME lets employee make a mistake then points out the mistake to management after. This appears counterproductive and passive aggressive.
- SME goes 'full Tucker' on a employee (with an audience present) to aggressively demonstrate how little the employee knows about the topic and embarrass the employee. While I've seen this approach work in the past, it's obviously undesirable for many, many, many reasons.
What is the best way to resolve a disagreement when you are hired as a subject matter expert and a colleague is ignoring your domain-specific advice?