I've been a big fan of Seth Godin ever since I first read his book Purple Cow. He always seems to have a way to cut through the B.S. and get right to the point with insights that are both inspiring and feasable. Linchpin is no exception.
Subtitled Are You Indispensable?, Godin's latest book which will be available tomorrow, is not so much a how to, as a call to arms. It's a guide to finding satisfaction and security in today's struggling economy and in the process make yourself a linchpin.
A linchpin is someone who does more than just work hard, but adds value to the work through creativity, innovation, action and connection. His argument is that all important work is art, and that all of us have the potential to be artists. For some of us the canvas for our art is sales, for others, engineering, medicine, marketing, etc. Linchpins do not allow themselves to become cogs in the machine. They find ways to make the machine better.
One of the more important sections of the book is the chapter on the obstacles we create for ourselves that prevent us from becoming linchpins. As I read, I saw several of the self-destructive thoughts and behaviors that have crept into my mind from time to time that have kept me from speaking up or presenting an idea.
Linchpin is an easy read and important for anyone who wants to make a difference in their current situation or find the courage to create a better situation for themselves. It now occupies a place on my bookshelf along with books like Orbiting the Giant Hairball, Eating the Big Fish, and A Whack on the Side of the Head as a book that I can turn to again and again for insight and inspiration.