Before you get the wrong impression of me as a totally humorless automaton, I am not about to suggest that there’s no humor in the boardroom.
But as I have said before in this blog, be careful that you don’t have to reap what you sow.
Let me give you some examples.
- the marketing director who liked to have a clique of ‘in-crowd’ managers and to make life difficult for those on the outside. Whatever his motivation, ‘divide and rule’ or pure mischief making, he caused tension and upset. And that’s bad.
- the head of marketing who went to pay for his room after an overnight stay only to find that his MD had put the hefty tab for customer entertaining from the night before on his room. Very amusing for all concerned except for the head of marketing who had to take the hit on his credit card which could well have put him over his credit limit. Incidentally, the company rule was that the most senior person present in a situation like that paid the bill. So, that was bad.
- the CEO who like to mock the personal appearance of other members of his senior management team to destabilize their confidence. Bad. Bad. Bad.
But even worse are the signals that this kind of behavior sends out. Just looking at the above examples staff might infer that it’s acceptable to bully people, ok to break the rules, acceptable for the company culture to break down into disparate camps.
Before you know where you are you have a dysfunctional culture on your hand.
So… think hard about the way you and your senior team behave.
Because a poor and unhelpful company culture is a bit like a tanker:
Very hard—if not impossible to turn around quickly.
Tags: automaton bad blog boardroom ceo cold virus company culture confidence credit card crowd divide and rule humor marketing mischief motivation personal appearance senior management team signals tension wrong impression