FanPost

Why would a business fire Melo?

I can't believe D'Antoni got fired from the Knicks. That was a shocker to me since I thought he should have been given the chance to succeed with his new roster. Alas it's always the superstars that get their way in the NBA. Thanks to Melo, the coach that gave birth to Linsanity is now kaput and it probably won't be too long before Jeremy slides back into oblivion. D'Antoni was the only one that ever trusted him to perform and make mistakes.

In the business world, I'd say he was a great manager because he was able to get a group of underachievers to perform above their individual capabilities. But unfortunately for him, he could not get his superstar player to buy into his system. It reminds me of one of my former coworkers who is a gifted engineer but was an emotional ticking time bomb. He was passionate to a fault. When he was motivated he did excellent work but he also had a poor attitude and did not respect his bosses. When he fell out of favor with management, he made it his duty to take everything and everyone down with him. It was so bad that people walked on egg shells around him since they were afraid he'd go off and create a scene. (Which he eventually did in the confines of the VP's office.)

Management couldn't do anything to get him back to performing the way he was. So they left him alone rather than deal with his attitude and basically froze him out of new projects. Finally he couldn't stand to be at work anymore and quit on his own. What lesson does that teach us? Hire for attitude and train to competency?

The VP of a company that I visited in New York drew me a diagram during my interview. It had 4 corners. The left part of the graph signified attitude and the bottom part signified skill. He said everybody falls into one of these 4 corners. The person on the upper right is a high attitude high, high skill guy and he's the person you want to keep and reward. The person on the lower left is the low attitude, low skill guy and obviously you get rid of that guy. If a person falls in the top left i.e. high attitude and low skill, your job as a manager is to train him and move him to the upper right. But then he asked me, what do you do to the guy on the lower right i.e. low attitude, high skill? How do you get this person to change his attitude? His answer: You don't. You fire him.

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