In my line of thinking where “lucky” is better than “good” it’s important to note that being dependable (or predictable) is better than being skilled.  Managers need to assign tasks and know that they will get done.  That is their job and that is what they are measured on.  Sure they are measured on revenue, productivity, and other metrics but none of these can be accomplished without work getting done.

So the manager has the option of assigning a task to someone who has a reasonable skill level but will certainly get the job done on time and someone who has a high skill level but may delay the project by not having their part done on time.  Growing up I always thought that skill trumped all just as I thought that people cared about technology.  These ideas were both wrong.  People care about money.

Because people care about money they want to ship products, deliver services, and do whatever it takes to make that money.  Software companies have shown time and time again that almost anything can be sacrificed (e.g. security, features) for delivery of product to market.  If I’m a manager and have to make the decision between someone who is dependable and someone who is not, their skill level is at the low end of my decision making process.  I need someone who is reliable.  This is why employees should always know what metrics their boss is being measured by so they can help increase those.  Only by making your boss’s boss happy can you make your boss happy.