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Linchpin: Are You Indispensable? How to drive your career and create a remarkable future Paperback – 4 Feb 2010
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For anyone who feels trapped in a labyrinth of tradition, this book is compass, map and sledgehammer (BUSINESS DESTINATIONS, February 10)
Timely new book from US bestselling author, Seth Godin whose previous books include Purple Cow, The Dip and Tribes.See all Product description
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Seth Godin painstakingly explains in Linchpin how the world of work has shifted so that "just doing your job" is a recipe for being dead while you still live . . . and having lots of job insecurity. His solution is for you to care about the results of your work, to reach out to others with your genuine emotions, and to innovate in ways that create something others appreciate . . . whether or not it has immediate economic value. Basically, he's suggesting you become a human being rather than a cog in a bureaucracy or complex process. He calls this being an artist.
I found this aspect of the book to be its main strength: A lot of people don't realize that they need to be innovating in ways that delight other people . . . rather than just pretending they are still in high school and trying to get along by fitting in.
I dislike mechanical metaphors as a way to encourage people to be less machine-like. Linchpin as a metaphor didn't work that well for me. His point is that since everyone else is just going through the motions of following orders, your humanity in seeking to make things better will make you indispensable. It's nice to think that's true, but the book doesn't contain any evidence beyond some anecdotes . . . many of which are about people I've never heard of or read about.
The writing style suggests that a lot of the book is mostly a cut-and-paste job from blogs. If that's the kind of choppy writing that appeals to you, you'll like this book better than I did. I thought it could have used a good editor. Why? You have to read a long time before he gets around to defining a lot of his concepts. In the meantime, you are wondering what he's trying to tell you.
A solution for this lack of orderly development of his ideas is to start with the drawing on page 230 and go on to read the summary that follows. Then, go back and read the book from front to back. It will make a lot more sense that way.
Despite the book's weaknesses, if you haven't decided to make the world a better place by being a caring innovator, you need this book. Get a copy and read it . . . and keep reading it until the point sinks in. I think it eventually will.
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I would say the book has that and it...Read more