Becoming a Linchpin: A Guide for College Students


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A presentation I gave at UT Dallas on March 23, 2011. Accompanying notes can be found at

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Becoming a Linchpin: A Guide for College Students

  1. 1. Linchpin Becoming aA GUIDE FOR COLLEGE STUDENTS
  2. 2. Marcelo Somers Media Product Manager Sabre Holdings @marcelosomers
  3. 3. Seth Godin:“ The networked revolution is creating huge profits, significant opportunities and a lot of change. What its not doing is providing millions of brain-dead, corner office, follow-the-manual middle class jobs. And its not going to. Fast, smart and flexible are embraced by the network. Linchpin behavior. People and companies we cant live without (because if I can live without you, Im sure going to try if the alternative is to save money).” - The Forever Recession (
  4. 4. 1. Know who you are.2. Be Authentic.3. Make something great.
  5. 5. What do you love?
  6. 6. Merlin Mann: (paraphrased)“ So many people today derive their meaning from their jobs. Your job should be a reflection of who you are.” - Back to Work podcast (
  7. 7. Career Counseling
  8. 8. So, howdoes that make you feel?
  9. 9. Meyers-Briggs Extroversion (E) / Introversion (I) Sensing (S)/Intuition (N) Thinking (T)/Feeling (F) Judgment (J)/Perception (P)
  10. 10. Meyers-Briggs Extroversion (E) / Introversion (I) Sensing (S)/Intuition (N) Thinking (T)/Feeling (F) Judgment (J)/Perception (P) INTJ
  11. 11. Strong Interest Inventory
  12. 12. Who are you?
  13. 13. Something Bad
  14. 14. Something GoodNothingSomething Bad
  15. 15. Gary Vaynerchuk:“ Mark my words, if you want to stay relevant and competitive in the coming years - I don’t care if you’re in sales, tech, finance, publishing, journalism, event planning, business development, retail, service, you name it - you will still need to start develop and grow your personal brand. Everyone - EVERYONE - needs to start thinking of themselves as a brand. it is no longer an option.” - Crush It (
  16. 16. Let’s give employers something Good
  17. 17. Social Networking
  18. 18. LinkedIn Profesional NetworkingConnections for Future Job Prospects Employers finding you
  19. 19. TwitterNetworking with people you don’t know Finding interesting content Publicizing your content
  20. 20. Blog Your personal hub on the internetWrite about industry news (the linked list) Create a community
  21. 21. 3 Rules:1. Be Authentic2. Write great content3. 10 helps for every ask
  22. 22. Steps:1. Register on Godaddy2. Sign up for social networking services with the sameprofessional username (ex. ‘marcelosomers’)3. Register your blog on Wordpress, Tumblr, or Posterous4. Update your profile on all sites with matching photo, bio,links to other services, etc.5. Write, write write6. Keep it business
  23. 23. Given the choice - who would you rather hire? • Person A who has a fantastic resume and great references on paper, but nothing else notable. • Person B who has all that, but also has a blog and has gathered a crowd of a few hundred subscribers and several thousand visitors per month (or more) writing intelligently and poignantly on the industry they are involved in.It is pretty clear between these two who has truepassion for what they do and would make realdifference in bringing an organization forward.- The Rise of Personal Branding (
  24. 24. SEO(that’s search engine optimization)
  25. 25. Seth Godin:“ Its a cultural instinct to wait to get picked. To seek out the permission and authority that comes from a publisher or talk show host or even a blogger saying, "I pick you." Once you reject that impulse and realize that no one is going to select you--that Prince Charming has chosen another house--then you can actually get to work. If youre hoping that the HR people you sent your resume to are about to pick you, its going to be a long wait. Once you understand that there are problems just waiting to be solved, once you realize that you have all the tools and all the permission you need, then opportunities to contribute abound. No one is going to pick you. Pick yourself.” - Reject the Tyranny of Being Picked: Pick Yourself ( the-tyranny-of-being-picked-pick-yourself.html)
  26. 26. MakeSomethingGreat.
  27. 27. Seth Godin:“ You might very well be doing a good job. But that doesnt mean youre a linchpin, the one well miss. For that, you have to stop thinking about the job and start thinking about your platform, your point of view and your mission. Its entirely possible you work somewhere that gives you no option but to merely do a job. If thats actually true, I wonder why someone with your potential would stay... In the post-industrial revolution, the very nature of a job is outmoded. Doing a good job is no guarantee of security, advancement or delight.” - Are You Doing a Good Job? ( job.html)
  28. 28. But we’re young!
  29. 29. Older Means You KnowToo Much:“ Knowing that “it can’t be done” because you can recount each of the failed attempts in the last 20 years to solve the problem can be a boat anchor on insight and imagination. This not only effects individuals, but happens to companies as they age.” - Too Young To Know It Can’t Be Done (’t-be- done/)
  30. 30. Step outside your Business Card
  31. 31. Rules for Job Hopping1. Learn2. Contribute3. Grow
  32. 32. Rules for Job HoppingBeing Opportunistic: Enjoying your job andproducing results where you are, but making it knownyou want more
  33. 33. Don’t be so busy you’ll miss the next great idea
  34. 34. It’s not about your network, it’s about your network’s network.
  35. 35. What it’s all about...
  36. 36. Know who you are. Be authentic.Make something great.
  37. 37. Thank You. @marcelosomers