I Call BS on Being Replaceable

Over the last 20 plus years of my career, I have often heard the phrase that “so and so (fill in the blank) is replaceable” …meaning we can and will find a replacement for a particular person.

Well, I call BS!

That phrase has often struck me as short sighted and lacks any resemblance of compassion. If we get right down to the core of who we are, none of us want to be replaceable. Certainly, we want the ability to leave on our terms, but we also want to know that the essence of who we are and the impact of the work we do matters.

I have watched people come and go in different positions over my career and I can tell you that in fact there are irreplaceable people. These irreplaceable people lead where they are planted, and they work to bring others together. They are accountable, reliable, and compassionate.

It is a mistake to think that people are truly replaceable.  This diminishes the true strengths and talents each person brings to an organization. It also minimizes what an organization needs to thrive fully with generosity and compassion.

When we are working in organizations that have the “you are replaceable mindset” we feel it…we know it…and we desire a different message. Instead, we yearn for the message that you are valuable, you are an asset, what you bring to the table matters! We also want to be celebrated and given the support to reach our highest potential!

I want to live, work, play and love in spaces that find me irreplaceable…. where the work that I do matters! I want to be able to give others that same experience.

Wherever you are planted in an organization or community let others know they are irreplaceable!

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