Employees as Trojan Horses

You go to work everyday, running the organization, thinking everything is okay, business is good, life is good, and then out of nowhere you wake up and your life has just turned to shit! How did it happen?

Consider the following…

It’s 5am and Paul wakes to news that the organization he leads is in crisis. Overnight a couple of disgruntled employees quit by means of dramatically airing their grievances on the internet. Their titillating video went viral. Paul’s cell phone is blowing up with calls from board members demanding to know how the hell this happened and what’s going to be done about it. The Customer Service department is overwhelmed with canceled orders, the media is calling for official comments, while social media is abuzz with everyone’s “unofficial comments” – speculative and grossly uninformed, but oh so juicy! This is all before Paul’s first cup of coffee. 

By the time he arrives at the office, the staff are huddled and whispering. The Human Resources Director looks like a deer caught in the headlights and has turned fifty shades of pale. The former employees’ Manager is cowering in his office. The opening bell for the stock market is less than thirty minutes from ringing, and stock futures are predicting a 25% drop for the organization at market open.

An emergency meeting is called for everyone; the atmosphere in the room is toxic. The management team is visibly shaken and displaying no traces of leadership. Employees sit smugly observing the carnage, momentarily reveling in the power they feel because a couple of their own managed to bring the organization and its leadership to its knees. As Paul surveys the room, his thoughts circle back to the phone calls that started this nightmare of a day and he realizes he doesn’t actually know the answer to the board members’ question. He also wonders how the hell this had happened.

You think this can’t happen to you? If so, you have vastly underestimated the power of your employees. Every aspect of the story above is true, and there are countless other examples to choose from. Why? Because most organizations have failed to come to grips with the growing threat that employees represent, and have carelessly overlooked this very real liability when performing their risk assessments.  

From the book “Pre-Emptive Strike Leadership: Neutralizing Behavioral Threats That Are Infiltrating Your Organization” by Dr. Arlene Battishill and Michael Levitt

#leadership #management #ceo #hr #humanresources #organizationaldevelopment #employees #leadershipdevelopment #emotionalintelligence #behavioranalysis #riskmanagement

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