Steve Jobs was right. He said that “A small team of A players can run circles around a giant team of B and C players.” And he said that there was a huge difference between what an average person – a B player – can accomplish, and what the best person – an A player – can accomplish. He noted that A players accomplish 50-100 times more than average, B players.
And the good news is, there’s an enormous appetite for A players in the world of cyber security, cloud computing, and big data systems, just to mention a few. But what IS an A player?
Put simply, an A player is someone in the top 10% of the available talent pool. They communicate effectively, are honest, transparent and eager to learn, and they just don’t quit. B players make up the next 25% of the talent pool and although they too, are hard workers, they don’t have that extra “something” that A players do. Oh, and then there’s the C players – they’re everyone else.
Since A players are only the top 10% of the talent pool – that is, there’s not a lot of you out there – finding, hiring and retaining A players is the biggest challenge almost all IT managers face. In fact, in Brad Smart’s nearly 40 years of research across thousands of companies that play in a variety of industries, he says the average company only gets hiring decisions correct about 25% of the time. You can do the math, but let me help you out: this means that IT managers hire B and C players over 75% of the time.
“So what?” you ask. Well, herein lies your opportunity. The formula is simple: become an A player and the biggest and best IT opportunities could be coming your way. Let me explain.
We know that demand for IT talent is at an all-time high. Some researchers estimate that there are over a million unfilled IT jobs out there today, and there’s no sign of things slowing down. We also know that every major IT organization – strike that. Every organization is looking for A players. And they are all struggling to find talented and forward-thinking professionals to fill their job openings. Enter: you.
By becoming an A player – and maintaining that status among your peers, team members and leaders – you’re opening yourself up to the top 10% of jobs out there, because you’re in the top 10% of talent out there. You have a real opportunity to not only improve yourself, your work and (as a result) your life, but you can also have a significant impact on the people you’re working with and the organizations you’re working for. What could be more rewarding?