Where to place your linchpins?

The indispensable employee brings humanity and connection and art to her organization. She is the key player, the one who’s difficult to live without, the person you can build something around. The indispensable employee – I call her/him a linchpin – is a person who’s worth finding and keeping
Seth Godin.

Linchpins or tripods are a rare commodity in the OSS industry. They are the people who have enough knowledge about IT systems, Telco systems and Business systems to make invaluable connections with their OSS tools. Few OSS organisations have more than a handful.

So which is the best position for your linchpins? Business Analysts? Trainer? Developer? Team Leader? Project Manager? CEO? Tester, etc? Customer focused or leading from head office?

To be flippant, place them wherever they want to go. These people are so rare and so valuable to your organisation that if you don’t make use of them then someone else will.

But the better answer is to build a culture where you are able to develop many linchpins and place them throughout your organisation to help further cultivate these skills in those around them.

Unfortunately the industry tends to use these people as fire-fighters, solving issue after issue and burn them out in the process.

How do you make best use of your tripods/linchpins?

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