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Yash Gupta
Business School Dean

Yash Gupta

Yash Gupta is Professor and Dean of The Johns Hopkins Carey Business School.

Bad call

This is never a wise strategy. When an owner or company head diminishes a manager's authority without removing him from his position, it's an unmistakable signal of lost confidence at the top. The rank-and-file workers quickly pick up the signal, and then they, too, lose faith in the person who is supposed to be leading them. No organization can thrive when such doubts are clouding the atmosphere.

Whether or not a manager with diminished authority is allowed to keep his title, the perception throughout the organization will be that he's not long for the job. Again, no one on his staff could be blamed for eyeing him in an entirely different way and wondering, "If my boss isn't calling the shots anymore, why should I pay attention to him?"

Certainly this type of action fits Redskins owner Daniel Snyder's reputation as an interfering, overbearing manager. It seems particularly bad in the case of a sports franchise, which depends greatly on the goodwill and financial backing of a loyal fan base. If the fans perceive the franchise is in turmoil, they are likely to decrease the amount of support - emotionally and financially - that they're willing to invest in the team.

And don't forget the impact on the employees in this situation - namely, the Washington players. Having been stripped of some of his authority as head coach, Jim Zorn will become diminished in the eyes of his team, and he will lose the ability to inspire success. The way the Redskins have performed this season, they could use all the inspiration they can get.

By Yash Gupta

 |  October 27, 2009; 11:50 AM ET
Category:  Sports Leadership Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
Previous: The untarnished hero | Next: Failure or its aftermath?

Comments

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"I am not usually a fan of eminent domain but if ever there was a time when the community could best be served by a takeover, this is it. Can't we just claim the greater good is allowing us, the fans, to take over ownership thru a plan similar to Green Bay's? I am only halfway kidding!"

No fan of any NFL team or community of fans is entitled to a winning team or a championship team. All of us who are fans of one of the 32 teams knows a. that every year 31 teams will not win the Super Bowl, b. there will be many more seasons when our favorite does not win the Super Bowl than when our favorite does, c. and that our favorite could win the Super Bowl this year or next, or not for ten or twenty years, or not for the next fifty years, or may never win it again.

Posted by: SCOTSGUARDS | October 29, 2009 3:25 AM
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I would just say, "Duh!"

But it's good someone in such a major leadership position in academia is willing to publicly take a stand on this debacle in an organization so indeliby tied to the heartstrings of a community.

Posted by: kls1 | October 28, 2009 4:30 PM
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Who ever accused Dan Snyder of being a positive corporate leader.


Posted by: helloisanyoneoutthere | October 28, 2009 3:37 PM
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lol!!! the Redskins are a joke.
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Posted by: A-Voter | October 28, 2009 2:28 PM
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Can the NFL institute a policy to examine owner's for head injuries? Snyder & Al Davis first in line!

Posted by: GarrisonLiberty | October 28, 2009 12:31 PM
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Let's admit that it's his team and his stadium. If the thousands of irate fans were smarter, wouldn't they address these shortcomings of Snyder, for example, to FedEx, whose name and goodwill (naming rights cost a bundle!) are attached to Snyder. See how Fed Ex leadership responds to the issue of sign trashing Monday, and how they like the many references made that link Snyder and FedEx. How about leadership from sponsors supporting the Redskins-- the big advertisers, not the corner shop where the owner offers a seat for oe game as a promotion. Advertisers crave happy consumers, and when they see comsumers so angry about a product with which they are linked, how does that corporate leadership respond?

Posted by: wevans3 | October 28, 2009 12:11 PM
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I am not usually a fan of eminent domain but if ever there was a time when the community could best be served by a takeover, this is it. Can't we just claim the greater good is allowing us, the fans, to take over ownership thru a plan similar to Green Bay's? I am only halfway kidding!

Posted by: hmwipf1 | October 28, 2009 11:13 AM
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Yes, Dan Snyder is interfering and overbearing. But that's to be expected from an insecure little runt with a severe Napoleon complex. Too bad he probably won't go bankrupt. He deserves it.

Posted by: adrienne_najjar | October 28, 2009 10:48 AM
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"Mr. Daniel M. Snyder" is a smarter man than any dean of any business school. He is NFL smart. Surround yourself with head-nodding lap-dogs, and one can believe anything.

Will he even notice that his businesses are now all floundering? He has done what few dolts could do, cause the Redskins franchise to devalue.

Ugh.

Posted by: AWWNats | October 28, 2009 10:31 AM
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The owner of Redskins has been a problem throughout his tenure of ownership. His fundamental motivation is to make his business work and not win the football championship. In seven years, he has seven head coaches and has a lousy quarterback who does not have quick instincts. He does not read the opponents and he gives away his move by looking at the player where he is going to throw. Most of the teams have known this problem and adjust their game to him. The team needs a new front line on the offense, new QB and possibly new coach. Hate to say, the team also may need a new owner.

Posted by: dr_vaman | October 28, 2009 10:22 AM
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Amen! Snyder really should take a course in Management

Posted by: cvalover | October 28, 2009 9:10 AM
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