This is Argyn's blog. I comment on topics of my interests such as software, math, finance, and music. Also, I write about local events in Northern Virginia, USA and all things related to Kazakhstan

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

"Let it go" vs "job security"

I heard many times IT and software development professionals mentioning "job security". Often it was sarcastic, sometimes serious. The idea's that you design and code in such a way that nobody can understand your product. In addition you grab the critical pieces of the project. Some people go even further, they make it so that they work alone on the module. If someone is sent to help them, they try to get rid of this "help". There's many ways. The most popular is to frustrate a new colleague with not sharing key pieces of information, or allowing him/her to do only the most routine parts, leave him/her in the dark all the time. After a few weeks, "help" will go away. Some of us are so good at this art of "job security". I'm writing this, and see a gallery of faces from my past gigs :)

I always followed a directly opposite approach. I don't like any piece of the project stuck to me. I like when other people know what I'm doing, and can replace me without too much trouble. Yet sometimes I found myself instinctively trying to "privatize" the piece of the project. For instance, someone is sent to help me, and I feel like it's better if I do it myself... Whenever I notice this behavior, I tell myself "Let it go".

So today I coined a new principle, and call it "Let it go". It should work not only in IT, imho. The idea's to concentrate on your key strength/expertise area, do your job well, and let everything else go to others, if they wish so. Don't try to grab everything or anything just because it would presumably make you important. It won't.

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