I was reading this and though wow this is some thing some one should …

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Becoming a Linchpin vs an Hourly Worker from Seth Godin’s Blog: Advice

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We have the graduating season, most universities programs have finished and we have people who have worked hard for years in Academics starting out their practical life.

This is a very testing period, if you get a job you think did you sell out low what is your friend getting as pay, if you are the last one to be picked life is harder with every one suspecting your talent and abilities, for this month I will post few things as guidance to these young professionals. Here is the first piece of advice from Seth Godin.

I was reading this and though wow this is some thing some one should have told me when I was graduating, but it is very much more relevant in current times. Linchpin as described by Seth Godin is some one irreplaceable in the organization some one who beings value. Hourly worker is some one who can be substituted easily with another person. Here is an excerpt from his post which might make it easier to understand the concept.

I had a college professor who did engineering consulting. A brand new office tower in Boston had a serious problem–there was a brown stain coming through the drywall, (all of the drywall) no matter how much stain killer they used. In a forty story building, if you have to rip out all the drywall, this is a multi-million dollar disaster. They had exhausted all possibilities and were a day away from tearing out everything and taking a loss. They hired Henry in a last-ditch effort to solve the problem. He looked at the walls and said, “I think I can work out a solution, but it will cost you $45,000 if I succeed.” They instantly signed on, because if he succeeded, the project would be saved.

Henry asked for a pencil and paper and wrote the name of a common hardware store chemical and handed it to them. “Here, this will work.” And then he billed them $45,000. That’s quite an hourly wage. It’s also quite a bargain.

Last few months have been really hard for organizations in Pakistan, there was a visible shortage of talented people due to which the premium on professionals was raised companies went after the limited resource pool resulting in escalated pay scales plus a greatly reducing average time a professional spends at an organization, specially in mobile development space people started switching companies in every two months and companies started paying them huge increases.

Now I know a typical response from the Employees would be yeah now Qazi will start talking about values and honesty why doesn’t he ask the companies to pay right wages so people wont leave :) but hear me out.

I have no issue with a good talented person getting pay worth his salt, but a mistake these people are making are though they are getting good money, they are not becoming linchpins, if you change an organization every 2 months you don’t get to see the full cycle of a product from its inception to launch and support, if you don’t have that knowledge you can easily be replaced by some one younger in a couple of years who will take half the salary when the scarcity goes away, and he will deliver the same result. Now put your self on the Employers shoes, lets say you have a 4 years experienced person vs a 2 years person the 4 year brings the same value to table the 2 years does who will he hire? Off course the resource with less wage, why ? because it makes sense to him as a business, unless the 4 year brings with him value which equates his experience maybe he has launched products from idea to release, worked head on with customers, been in selling position, can really deliver the value of his pay they won’t think for a second. Here is Seth Godin’s take on value.

Consider, for example, someone putting together a series of concerts for which they intend to sell subscriptions or even have the musicians sell tickets.

They could seek out pretty good musicians and imagine that paying them $500 or more per hour is very fair compensation. After all, that’s more than a podiatrist gets, and she gives you back the use of your foot.

But when they find a linchpin, someone who will either make it easier for them to sell subscriptions or will bring an audience with them, the question isn’t how much time it took for the musician to do her set, the question is what did she bring in terms of value, right? An indispensable person, someone with a rare asset, has few substitutes and an hourly rate makes a lot less sense.

So, if a musician is going to sell 300 subscriptions for you and you earn $200 a subscription from that effort, that person just added $60,000 worth of value. Who cares if it took a minute or a day? What’s on the table is who gets what portion of the value added…

I have been there when the Internet boom happened, seen people jump around get higher pays and then when the bubble burst were ready to do internships and jobs without pays, only the ones who brought value worth their experience were paid well in those days when giants like Cress Soft folded. I see a similar trend happening due to Mobile Phone Application boom, if you are a professional don’t take your next step based on what you will get in your pocket, base it on what it will bring to your resume and career, and the money will not matter.

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