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Unfortunately the indispensible employee generally isn't the one getting fed hard technical problems, he's the one responsible for maintaining the complex, mission-critical thingy that only he understands and which seems to break down on a regular basis.

I do not envy the indispensible employee.

It's a trade off. I got in at 9.30, left at 5, was overpaid and spent most of my day reading HN, doing side projects, or playing cool js games like that cat one. My only meaningful responsibility was to make sure we didn't break down too much or for too long, and that took a few hours a week.

I think that for some people that would have been a trade off they'd be happy to make (and in many ways it was attractive), I think if I'd got on with the people I worked with I might still be there.

Also pity them if they want to fix the mission-critical thingy (after staring into the void for so long) but the business' "plan" is to quietly limp along forever.

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