Everywhere I travel, I hear about the economy. Most people’s immediate concern is either holding onto their existing job or, if they’ve already lost it, finding a new one.

There are plenty of books on honing your job search skills (Harvey Mackay just wrote a great one entitled, Use Your Head to Get Your Foot in the Door). Reading these books can provide you with a solid advantage, if you’re competing with others in the job market. Yet, most of these books treat the symptom of being jobless, not the root cause.

In Linchpin, Seth Godin nails the cause—and the solution.

“For hundreds of years, the population has been seduced, scammed and brainwashed into fitting in, following instructions and exchanging a day’s work for a day’s pay. That era has come to an end.”

Godin defines a factory as “a place where people go to do what they’re told and earn a paycheck.” By this definition, whether you are a blue collar or a white collar worker, you are still a factory worker.

Technology caused massive layoffs in blue-collar factory work, but we adapted. Now, technology is doing the same to white-collar factory workers—and many people are wondering what’s next.

According to Godin, “The scam is that just about everything you were taught in school and by the media was an invented myth, a fable designed to prep you to be a compliant worker in the local factory. If you have a job where someone tells you what to do next, you’ve just given up the chance to create value.”

The fix is not in learning how to write a better résumé, but rather in becoming a linchpin. Linchpins rarely job search or write résumés. Their “body of work”—their ability to connect, invent and make things happen—becomes their résumé.

“The linchpin is an individual who can walk into chaos and create order,” says Godin. “Linchpins are the essential building blocks of great organizations. They may not be famous but they are indispensable, and in today’s world they get the best jobs and the most freedom.”

But becoming indispensable involves doing hard work. Why is it so hard? Because deep within our brain lies the amygdala, the lizard brain, which sabotages anything that feels threatening, risky or generous.

How do you overcome this resistance and thrive as a linchpin? Godin’s new book offers an excellent treasure map. It will show you that in today’s world, you have a choice to make a unique contribution to something you care about, and that the choice is yours.

Whether you’re a frustrated “factory worker” looking for a better way, a network marketing professional, a company owner, an entrepreneur or already a linchpin, this book will show you that there is no better time than now to bring your best self to the market place and be richly rewarded for it.

Hardcover, 244 pages, $25.95;
Portfolio, 2010