I discovered Seth Godin on the Web and began reading his blog. I then participated in the launch of Linchpin in New York.
What is the definition of a linchpin? According to the Merriam Webster dictionary, a linchpin is “one that serves to hold together parts or elements that exist or function as a unit.” In this case the term refers to person and their company who becomes indispensable to their customers.
I chose to review the book Linchpin for my first review because it:
- Focuses on the customer, the most important person in my business.
- Helped me get more things done.
- Consistently offers a different, creative, innovative viewpoint.
- Expresses in words my thoughts about becoming indispensable to my customers.
To be a linchpin, according to Godin, you need to be able to do the following:
- Provide a unique interface between members of your the organization and your customers organization
- Deliver unique creativity
- Manage a situation or organization of great complexity
- Lead customers
- Inspire staff
- Provide deep domain knowledge, a subject matter expert
- Possess a unique talent
While I always think about how I can add value to my business relationships. However like other sales professionals, I tend to focus a little too much on calculating what I will get in return. This is a mistake, according to Godin.
Godin talks at length about the concept of the unreciprocated gift—that giving a gift without expecting something in return will make you indispensable. An example of an unreciprocated gift is to offer your customer a workable solution to a complicated problem or issue and expecting nothing in return.
I agree 100% with the concept: that giving an unreciprocated gift will make me indispensable. On the flip side, focusing on a reciprocal gift could make me dispensable , disposable.
All I need to do now is give more unreciprocated gifts. And so my work continues!