Seth Godin is one of my favorite business authors because he makes sense and thinks out of the box. Seth’s last book, called Linchpin, is an excellent read but after rereading it I started to wonder why there are so few people who embrace his Linchpin philosophy ?
The workplace for most people today has become very stressful. Employers are cutting back on hours and laying off people to make numbers which leaves a lot of work that still has to be done. Middle managers who reside in cube farms are often stressed trying to meet deadlines and make things happen and as thus they become task managers not thinkers.
Seth goes into this in the first chapter of his book but to be honest there aren’t that many people who can really embrace Linchpin principles without the real danger of losing their jobs. Today we are often reviewed with input from other and if are willing to “give up the love” as Seth says to embrace being a Linchpin then there is a good chance that our managers are going to ding us as “not being a team player” or some other acronym for doing what we believe to be best.
Then there are the people who are content where they are. They are earning a good paycheck and they have lost their passion because it has been drained through corporate processes, endless meetings and politics. There are days when they may feel good about what they are doing but those days are coming less and less. In this economic climate they can’t afford to rock the boat too much so they’ll just sit back and do what they need to do and become one of the collective.
Like I have said before there comes a time when we all have to make a choice the direction our careers will take. The problem seems to be that choice is often a matter of paying the mortgage or not paying the mortgage.
When my boss told me to stop sending emails and have meeting to get people to do what they were supposed to do I decided I had enough and left a six figure corporate job. I started my consulting company and love writing and helping people with my passion, digital marketing, but I would love to join one company where I can both act as a teacher and help them embrace empowered consumers.
Today if you send out a resume you’re lucky if you even get a response. Most companies don’t want Linchpins they want COGS who will fit in the machine very nicely. I won’t give up hope though. I know I am damn good at what I do just as I know that out there is someone who is thinking “I need a linchpin”.