This was a new term that I heard recently, FullStack Employee. This word actually comes from Java coders who, when they learn all the modules and languages for java coding get termed as Full Stack.
This same is now being translated in the IT and ITes industry to define employees as FullStack Employee.
So what is FullStack? Did this exist before?
For me in the simplest of words is “Jack of all”. However, the definition from industry to industry can differ. For me a full stack employees is the one who understands how things work across the organisation. It helps get things done, ropes in SME’s and at the same time also has a holistic view on the task at hand. Sounds familiar…yes just like your typical Corporate Communication Team Member.
A Corporate Communication team is quite universal in nature, while it cuts across various geographies, departments and business, it is one of the teams that cuts across horizontally within the organisation. Right from the top layers to the bottom.
The best part is that while you do not own any of the process/ departments, however any failure you get held accountable, and I think that is the key difference in being a FullStack employee – Accountability.
Is this a new concept… No not at all, this is something that is being done from ages across industries. Remember the Management trainees. Who get inducted and are made to visit every department in the organisation to understand how the organisation runs, its technicalities etc. That’s what Being FullStack means.
Organisations today are complex network, with may issues and problems, FullStack employees are those individuals who cut across the silos and bring about the broader picture for a better solution.
So what does a FullStack employee look like? Take a look around your office and if you see anyone who can help solve problems, connect the dots, and Stich the picture together is your FullStack Employee, typically like your project managers etc.
But Being a FullStack employee is a double Edged Sword, what works as a boon for the organisation, can sometimes be a curse for the individual. A FullStack employee is in high demand when the organisation is on a growth path, however, when the organisation reaches it peak and is looking to be lean, such roles are less in demand. This makes the individual redundant and not worth while for the organisation. Take a look at history, is always the top layers, that face the brunt of layoffs, the bottom most layer is the last to take the hit, especially employees who are niche in their domain.
So the saying jack of all and master of One, still holds true… become FullStack to Grow and be that Expert that no one would like to let go off…(yes the price point is a variable but that is a conversation for another day).
Sharing a link of session recently held with NHRD on Being FullStack.