August 22, 2009

Specialists & Multi-taskers

Filed under: Random — Robert John Ed @ 3:53 am

Some employees do one thing really well.  Some do a lot of things well.  There is a certain thought process in the market that if you are a multi-tasker, you can’t be the best in the world at any one thing.  But there’s also something to the idea that you can be the best in the world at working for a company that needs a lot of things done well.

It may not be a great strategy if you want to climb corporate ladders.  I think the specialists are more apt to achieve those ends.  Still, if you want to grow with one company (likely a smaller company), making yourself needed and valuable can be achieved easily by doing a lot of things well.  In fact, I’d argue that small businesses thrive due to a few select individuals who outperform on a bevy of tasks.

“Big Iron” companies aren’t looking for that.  They have specified roles.  Attempting to go above and beyond can be construed as stepping on other peoples’ toes for personal gain.  It’s all very contextual.  Peep the context.



  1. Just getting caught up on your posts…I think this one is well said and I completely agree with you. You now see the differences between how big corporations and small companies operate. I hated being pigeon-holed into doing a couple of tasks at the big companies. That’s not my personality. I enjoy being well rounded and always want to learn new things whether it’s from a design side or more of a programming side, and let’s not forget how to apply business and marketing knowledge in there too. At the big company, they (the big time execs) didn’t care about my ideas or how I could save them time by doing something else. It was a ‘well, we’ve been doing it this way forever and it’s been working so let’s not change it’ kind of mentality. The machine just rolls on. At the small company where I’m at now, I get to wear many hats and am continually building my skill sets, which in my opinion enhances my value and and self-worth, if that makes any sense.

    Comment by Taj Bolton — August 28, 2009 @ 2:53 pm

    • Of course that makes sense taj! I agree with you to an extent, but we probably both see the value in working cross functionally on multiple projects too.

      I think you can learn anywhere, bit it’s personal preference what you feel better about doing.

      Stay up.

      Sent from my mobile phone.

      Comment by Robert John Ed — August 28, 2009 @ 3:11 pm

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