The short term goal in poker (the goal in a specific deal) is either to maximize your gain if you think you can win (either with a strong hand or by bluffing with a weak hand) or to minimize your loss if you think you will lose. However, the outcomes of individual games are not independent. You can afford to make some `bad moves' (the expected value for the chosen action in the current game is not the highest) provided they contribute to greater gains in later games.
An expert player is one who can usually recognize when they have or do not have the winning hand, and can maximize the money they win appropriately. They also occasionally invest money in misinformation (such as bluffing) and have the ability to identify good hands and understand their opponents (how they will react to certain actions or what hand they likely hold based on their actions). Knowledge of tells (physical mannerisms) and psychological plays are sometimes used in the human side of opponent modeling. Overall, the expert player has a good understanding of playing strategies, hand strength and potential, pot odds, and good opponent modeling skills. These factors are used as the basis for every decision made.