Monday, February 19, 2007

Always Work For Someone Smarter

A well worn (and true) tech management axiom is 'Only hire people smarter than you' - 'A players hire other A players, B players hire C players' - et cetera. This is all described best by Joel Spolsky in a number of articles, here's one.

Importantly, the converse is equally true: Only work for someone smarter than you. Across the board, the smartest and best employees will check-out if it appears that management isn't up to the task of leading them to wealth and glory. Unfortunately, the mediocre busybodies will keep plugging away, and soon enough, the center of gravity within the organization will swing their way.

I am extraordinarily lucky to work for Dave, who is smarter than me. I know this because Dave gets actual real work done - today, Dave illustrated this quality on his blog. Most people's blog posts do not show any actual real work - just opinion, which is, of course, cheap. To get something done, you have to figure it out. To figure something out, you have to be smart.

The logicians among you might be asking: How can it be possible to both hire and work for people smarter than you? And if not, which is more important?

If you think that you might want to endow a foundation someday, or even own a HondaJet, and you work in a small organization, make sure that everyone is equally brilliant, and that each team member is better than anyone else at a couple of important things.

1 comment:

Dave Naffziger said...

Be careful, getting things done doesn't always equate with being smarter. In fact, you could build a classic consulting foursquare...