Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Fair or Foul?

England Football Manager Sven Goran Erickson has resigned and will leave his job after the World Cup in Germany this summer.

Sven has an excellent record of results as England football manager by any measure. England won their qualifying group for the World Cup and results under his leadership compare favourably with all previous England managers.

What has undoubtedly been the ‘Achilles heel’ for Sven are his ‘off the field’ activities in his private life. He has been in the tabloid newspapers news far too often for non football reasons.

Those reasons have nothing to do with his management ability in football. It seems he has decided enough is enough and has resigned blaming the press for intrusion in his private life.

The question that intrigues me – and I have no real answer is:

Does it matter what he does in his private life if he delivers good outcomes in his job or do we expect more integrity from people in such high profile positions?

I would be interested in opinions on this thorny question. The same question applies of course to people in high profile jobs in the world of business, entertainment and politics.


Rocky said...

This is a really good topic. I think that people in high profile positions have to realize that their life is going to be made public. many do not like this, but it is a fact of life. There certainly has to be a separation of the professional and the personal. However, if people are going to represent our country they must be held to a higher standard. Like it or not they are in a position to provide role models for our kids and represent our culture. It is a debate that can carry out for a long time. Felix asked a similar question on his Brand Soul. Does the fact that Kobe Bryant scored 81 points in one basketball game make him a great player and/or leader. He is a great player, but in my opinion, serves as a poor leader and role model. He is not who I want my kids to be like.

Trevor Gay said...

It seems to me some people in high profile positions have to accept publicity as part of the job. Some can deal with it and some can't.

Sadly when you court publicity the media will always be looking for the slightest slip in your integrity or behaviour and they will pounce.

In Britain our media are very good at building people up and then looking for the weaknesses.

I like your reference about role models. A good judgment call might be 'Would I want my children to behave in that way?'

I am getting better at not being too judgmental and I really feel Sven has probably been treated a little unfairly and yet part of me says he is paid about 3 million pounds per year so maybe we should expect impeccable integrity.

I suspect it is nothing to do with money and everything to do with individual personal fallibilities – which of course we all have.