Wednesday, 14 June 2017

Organisation Values and Culture - So Often a Poor Reflection

I became aware of a work place announcing several redundancy’s this week.

 This can be a difficult time for those involved particularly if it occurs at the back end of a successful and satisfying career.

I know of a successful CEO of some 18 years standing who over her long period of tenure, re-built and re-defined a 100-year-old somewhat iconic Queensland Brand. By any measure, she was a success and received more than one award from the business community and industry body in recognition of her achievements.
Her tenure ended in 2015.

I wondered at the time how she would cope on stepping down from a role that had consumed her life for so long.

It occurred to me that the situation those that received redundancy this week face is not unlike that of professional sports people upon retirement.

Professional sports people define themselves by the sport they play, the people they influence, the adulation they receive and the power and status their ability and hard work delivers.

Many in business define themselves in much the same way.  

We hear constantly of past sports stars who have gone “off the rails” succumbing to poor lifestyle choices, alcohol, drugs, relationship breakdowns, violence even.

A common failing of sports people is neglecting to plan for life after their time in the spot light ends. I suspect it is the same for many in business too. In both cases, an unhealthy sense of emptiness can prevail.

In the sporting world, careers are often terminated suddenly, brutally even. A contract is not renewed, you are left out of a team or  simply advised at the end of a season or campaign, you are no longer required. Clean up your locker, return the sponsors gear, be on your way.

The ending of a sporting career so often is accompanied by a lack of acknowledgement of past successes or the contribution made to the current success state of the club, team or sport.

When you think about it, it is incredibly disrespectful, offensive and un-necessarily humiliating when handled badly. It is so often handled badly.
It is a true reflection of Values and Culture.

Much like it is in business too.

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