A related issue is the 'downtime' associated with some productive programmers. I have a really good, really experienced programmer that does work in 'cycles.' Super productive, head-down, jam until fixed/completed, then a period of 'less productive' research, a proclivity to chat, and some fooling around. Overall, more productive than most other programmers I've worked with plus high quality code. Outsiders (even 'IT outsiders' who don't understand programming) look and question this guy's productivity and wonder if he should be replaced with a less expensive option (i.e. 'hungry' newbie). Experience helps you see things the new guy won't and, in many cases, helps you be more productive instead of busy flailing around.