In April 2011, I participated at SXSWi on a panel with Poornima Vijayashanker and Rebecca Sinclair. We discussed the pros and cons of generalist and specialists skills based on our work experiences and personal temperment.
Most of the audience consisted of generalists; many of them trying to define and value their skills in a corporate culture. Our panel focused on how to work with groups as a generalist, how to work on a team with generalists and specialists, and how to find work environments that value your skills.
“Sometimes the deeper you dive, the broader it gets.”
Although I am certainly a “diverse generalist” (have you seen my work history?), the comment I uttered (quoted above) towards the end of the panel surprised myself, and I’ve been thinking about it ever since.