As I was reading today’s Washington Post interview with Joe Paterno, I was absolutely amazed at the lack of action on the part of so many people. I found their inability to be proactive in the face of such horrific circumstances, astounding. While reading this article, I shook my head at some of the quotes, wondering if Paterno was serious. Unfortunately, he was.
“I DIDN’T FEEL ADEQUATE.” JOE PATERNO
This was his comment about having to deal with the report of sexual abuse of children. It seems that he had never had to deal with this issue before and didn’t know how to when it happened in 2002. He kicked it upstairs and decided to let them deal with it. The rest is history…
BUT THEN I STARTED TO THINK OF THIS IN RELATIONSHIP TO BUSINESS.
How many times do business owners think that doing nothing is NOT a decision?
How often do they stay a course, hoping that the situation will change and that things will improve on their own?
Do they know what the right action is and avoid it?
How many times do they rationalize their desires saying it’s best for the business, knowing that they are just being selfish?
How often do they let someone else deal with something that they should have dealt with?
Are they guilty of “just turning a blind eye” to something that could potentially destroy all those in it’s path?
LET’S FACE IT THESE THINGS HAPPEN ALL THE TIME.
And I’m here to say that doing nothing IS a decision. (They decided to ignore it and hope that it quickly and quietly disappeared. That seems to have been the MO at Penn State.) This rarely works and takes lots of energy that could be put to positive use.
Staying the course is great if the course they are on is a good one. If they stay a course that is riddled with abuse and unethical behavior they’re headed for a disaster. Just a point of observation, things do not just work themselves out and believing so is just a fantasy.
“So I just did what I thought was best. I talked to people that I thought would be, if there was a problem, that would be following up on it.”Joe Paterno didn’t even seem to know if this was a problem or not?
I believe people know the right action, they CHOOSE not to act on it. (No one in the world could tell me that those people at Penn State didn’t know what was right. Even if they hadn’t dealt with this before, they didn’t know it was wrong to let sexual abuse of children continue? Come on now…)
People have an agenda. Every business owner needs to understand that is a fact and own up to theirs. The goal is to not make decisions that feed the ego and starve the business.
“I didn’t know exactly how to handle it and I was afraid to do something that might jeopardize what the university procedure was,” he said. “So I backed away and turned it over to some other people, people I thought would have a little more expertise than I did. It didn’t work out that way.”
Business owners have a hard time dealing with everything but if something is so obviously wrong, it’s in their best interest to address the issue squarely.
Paterno said he told athletic director Tim Curley and school vice president Gary Schultz what he saw and left it in their hands to do the right thing.
Are business owners so wrapped up in themselves that they are able to “turn a blind eye” to something as serious as this?
“I NEVER HEARD OF, OF, RAPE AND A MAN.”
Well, if you never heard of it, which I have a hard time believing, does that mean it doesn’t exist and didn’t happen to the little boys in the Penn State shower rooms?
A MESSAGE TO BUSINESS OWNERS.
Beware of these downfalls. We have seen many huge companies get caught in these traps and it has brought even the most mighty crashing down. It’s important to be true to yourself and do what you know is the right thing. Don’t leave up to others to do what you should do. Take control and do what needs to be done, you’ll be so happy you did.
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