I have mentioned before I love baseball. I have been an Atlanta Braves fan since the late 80’s and even had a chance to try out for the team in 1991. In an earlier post I talked about integrity in light of the Houston Astros sign stealing scandal. Today, Major League Baseball (MLB) commissioner Rob Manfred handed down “punishment” for the Boston Red Sox. The stories are connected because then Red Sox manager, Alexa Cora, was a former Astros bench coach named in that team’s punishment. Manfred’s punishment for the Red Sox is focused on their video replay operator. He says the operator used some in-game feed data which was only relevant in a limited scenario. He also briefly mentions a limited number of players were involved, but doesn’t call them out by name. Here’s the part I want to highlight – Manfred goes on to say he did not find Red Sox coaching staff, front office, other players, or Cora “should have known” the operator was using in-game video. As a leader, you are ultimately accountable for the actions of your team. You are responsible for leading by example and continually communicating the values of the team. If someone is acting unethically, and you don’t know it, I would argue it’s a failure in your leadership. You either didn’t set a strong example, or you let your team decide what they think is right, or you’re out of touch with your team. I think it’s unrealistic to say Red Sox leadership didn’t know, or at least have a feeling, something was wrong. If the replay operator were the only one who knew, it might be possible he could keep it secret, but the report says other players knew. I believe this was a case of looking the other way. I also would like to make the case Rob Manfred needs to be held accountable. He is the leader of MLB and his approach to handing out punishment for the sign stealing findings shows he’s not willing to hold other leaders fully accountable for their actions. As a result, he is showing he is a weak leader. As long as weak leaders stay in positions of leadership they will be a lid for their organization. As such, it’s time for Manfred to be held accountable for his actions, which means he should be removed from his position so a strong leader can take the reigns.
Is your leadership setting a good example, in your workplace, or at home? What would your team, or your family have to say? Maybe it’s time to raise the lid on your leadership so you can be held accountable for the great things happening around you. A coach can help you get back on track. What are you waiting for?