Large organisations need specialists. They’re at the scale where the few extra percent that a specialist can eke out of their business can be worth the cost of paying the specialist.
Small organisations don’t have those luxuries. For them, it’s better if an employee or consultant can complete many tasks across a variety of roles. Their customer support might have to also build the website, or the product designer might also be responsible for keeping in contact with suppliers. The CEO might double up as the accountant.
Some businesses can only afford a handful of employees, so each must wear many hats by sheer necessity.
When you’re wearing many hats, you don’t have to be perfect at any given task. You just have to be good enough that the task you just finished won’t cause problems in the future.
A good example of this in my life is my responsibility for managing the Frequency Central Website. As part of this role, I often have to edit and upload photos about new products.
Today, we needed to add the AS3046 to the site. I wasn’t provided with a suitable photo, and there isn’t one available online. Taking a photo of a chip like that is inconvenient for me, and outside of my expertise. I’m not even sure I have the hardware to do it properly.
Editing photos is a skill I picked up by doing small things like this here and there. I’ll freely admit that I’m an amateur at it. My edits aren’t great; there are a few spots that stick out to me like a sore thumb.
But for this specific product, a customer won’t be looking hard enough to see those editing flaws. The photo only exists for a customer to check visually that they are buying the right chip.
In this scenario, it doesn’t matter that my editing skills aren’t perfect, and it doesn’t matter that the photo is faked. The edits don’t have to hold up to scrutiny; they just have to be good enough to not draw any suspicion.
When you’re wearing many hats, you don’t have to be exceptional in every role. You only have to be good enough.