It’s about time I spoke on the curious case of Isaiah Thomas. As in I-T, the undersized NBA player bouncing around on 10-day contracts, moving further and further away from the stardom he once knew. A knee injury originating from an unaddressed ailing hip changed the trajectory of one of my all-time favorite players’ careers. We are baring witness to a brash truth:
You’re only as good as your next play.
“KC” — short for Keldrick Carper— the most recent guest on Beneath The Surface, also known as BTS, also known as the show I conjured after watching the Michael Strahan documentary, addressed this very topic on the latest episode. He recently medically retired from the game of football, and generously shared that he recognized the limits of his value. In the world of business and industry, no one cares about how you are if you can no longer serve their interests. “KC, no one is going to care if you can’t remember things”.
Now, surely people will care, but to what extent? There is money to be made, games to be won, and other talent to coach. It would be naive to believe that any one person is indispensable. There’s always someone out there who’s younger, hotter, and with the potential to be better. Key word: potential.
Coaches don’t know how people will fair in a season let alone a game. They take their chances based on metrics that I cannot speak on, and pray. As for the people who are valued for their contributions, you’re the gift that will keep on giving. You will be compensated and treated well for your efforts. If they shall at any point falter or change, your place in the depth chart is in grave danger. Seek assistance immediately.
The same sort of clause can be tied to the workplace. If you think for a moment that two and a half weeks (or less) after you decide to take your talents elsewhere, the next person won’t be putting their post-it notes and notepads where yours once were, you’re wrong. Everyone is replaceable. Yes, even the ones who don’t think so. The key is to make it hard to be replaced; to get to a point where your worth is understood. If you’re in this position, how does it feel to be God’s favorite? I kid. But with a little bit of luck in the right situation and work, you too could be in a similar predicament.
Moral of the story: everyone is replaceable, and knowing this can be a huge advantage.
Choose yourself because someone is waiting to fill your shoes; just remember to leave them with a little room at the top to serve as a reminder that they have some growing to do 😉