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Sport & Business: Luis Suarez

Sport & Business:  Luis Suarez


There are many thousands of articles that have been written about the connections between sport and business: the need build your team, plan your strategy, motivate the team members and most of all build a desire within the team that means that they never, ever give up.


Then, you see an incident such as the one that occurred at Anfield on Sunday 21 April, and you wonder, but hope, that such an incident never ever could take place in business.  To paraphrase an old Liverpool FC manager, the facts are that, one player in red, turned around, when he hoped that nobody was watching, and forcibly bit a player in blue on the upper arm.  He didn’t stop until the Chelsea player, in some pain, and surprise, threw Suarez to the floor.  Of course, with the number of cameras in place at any Premier League live broadcast, the incident was picked up – and since the game finished at Sunday tea time has played incessantly on all media outlets.  By Monday lunchtime, Liverpool have fined their player, but there is the potential for additional punishment from the Football Association.


So what would you do if your star player had committed a heinous crime at work?  It would be naïve, and incorrect, to say that there have never been any interoffice romances, but I’m not referring to affairs of the heart between people in relationships here. If one of your team members had conducted an act so stupid that it’s not covered directly in Health & Safety manual, how would you react?  If one staff member had bitten another team member in the staff kitchen, when they’d had a disagreement, as they were making a cup of tea – what would you do?


Well, for me it comes down to company values.  A lot, but not all companies have company values, but how many live by them. How many can even be repeated by all staff?  If you are a business that is not only founded on values, but actually lives by those values, then it’s a very decision to make.  It doesn’t matter if its your star sales performer, or somebody from the support team, your corporate values – and the term corporate applies to all sizes of businesses here – will make the decision an easy one.  Of course, there will be a HR disciplinary process to follow, but the decision will be an easy one.  Make the wrong decision, and your corporate culture has just been dismantled…

Published by on April 22, 2013. Comments Off on Sport & Business: Luis Suarez

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