Sunday, August 14, 2005

Eisner & Executive Decisions

The nonsense that Eisner fomented at Disney with his former "friend" (do baracudas have friends?)Michael Ovitz reads as a "how NOT to" manage. Read here for the details.

Each day, people influencers face decisions that affect the lives of others (children, peers, patients, co-workers, friends, etc.). Our success depends on how we maintain relationships.

Let's review simple guidelines here:
  1. Act with integrity--is our word good?
  2. Communicate with clarity--do people understand not only what we say but what we mean?
  3. Empower with confidence--do we give people the responsibilty AND AUTHORITY to make a difference?
  4. Correct kindly, discretely, and firmly--do we help people to get back going the right direction remembering that we too make mistakes, sparing them public humiliation?
  5. Praise openly and often--do we reinforce the good decisions people make?
  6. Model passion and perspective--(this may seem contradictory) do we love our company and deeply desire success but recognize that life exists beyond the four walls?
  7. Treat others the way we want to be treated?

Michael Eisner's problems at Disney weren't potential and ability, they were relational and emotional. He made commitments to different people and broke his word. He was afraid to be disliked, as strange as that sounds, by his management staff. He failed to support his direct-reports. He encouraged in-fighting so he could maintain control. In short, Mr. Eisner was a one-man chaos creator who had enough street-smarts to "finesse" the board.

Departments, divisions and whole companies run in spite of, rather than because of, the senior staff who view their self-preservation, ambition and achievement as the most important goal and the company's success secondary. Mr. Eisner's pettiness revealed a world that many know exist but never actually see. It's not pretty.

More blogs about the woodlands rita.