The True Cost of Culture Divestment

’ve physically pulled the plug on the idiot box (tv), and now only watch about 7 hrs/wk. However, whenever I do turn it on, it never ceases to amaze me. This week’s bizarre-ity . . . Riley Cooper.

Eagles’ wide receiver Riley Cooper has truly gotten himself into the deep end of the culture pool. After a tirade of racial slurs at a concert (and yes, it was recorded – you play in the NFL man), Mr. Cooper has been apologizing all over Planet Earth. And I do believe he’s sorry. However, here’s the collateral damage:

  • undisclosed NFL fines ($$$$)
  • team fines ($$$$)
  • broken trust from team members (you’re a wide receiver with an African-American quarterback, dude)
  • broken trust with the team’s leadership (possible trade talk)
  • broken trust with the team’s fans (decrease ticket sales)
  • lost customer loyalty (internal and external)
  • personal shame, guilt and anguish
  • loss of respect from his local community (Philly’s pretty diverse)

In a recent conference I attended (before this news broke), one consultant said, “Culture will eat strategy for lunch!”, and this is living proof.

While Mr. Cooper committed the act, he created a Philadelphia Eagles problem, not just a personal one.

The real question is, Do You have a Riley Cooper on your team?

How would you know if you did?

How much are you really investing to increase the culture in your organization? (otherwise, you’re divesting)

It might be a really good idea to take the first steps to do so.

The 5-Second Rule for New Leaders

With food, the 5-second rule applies to folklore we’ve assigned to how we disregard the germs near the food we drop. The same is true with new leaders.

Don’t we drop some pretty important things in the beginning that we wish we could pick back up before it turns bad (poor communication, self esteem, adversity to risk, trust, etc.)?

Here are 3 Things you should apply the 5-Second Rule to in a new leadership role (to keep the germs away):

1. Fly-by-the-Seat-of Your-Pants Leadership. Do you ever feel you’re overcompensating, trying to look good in front of the boss on 19 different projects? Key: Learn delegation, and apply it regularly.

2. Master these words: “I think I’m right, but who has a better approach?”

3. The Discipline of Execution. Simply put, meet the deadline with outstanding results. Don’t plan as much as you execute, but be willing to course-correct and apply the lessons to the next “thing”.

These 3 areas will give you to the gall to focus on solutions, create your brand, and improve with every 5-second drop, without pissing off the C-Suite.