Firehouse Blog

Monthly Archive: April 2013

A Lesson for Managers

terryblogI have joined, in order to manage, many different types of organizations over the years.

They range from businesses and volunteer groups to not-for-profits and a school board. I even ran a very large church for a few months. Upon joining each organization I found they frequently had problems that had existed for long periods before my tenure.

The organizational problems I am referring to are often widely understood by the employees, managers, and/or volunteers, but have never been dealt with. The problems are a source of embarrassment and diminish the morale of the participants, but linger on for month after month – and sometimes for years.

– An employee who needs corrective action (or dismissal) is ignored.

– A repair to the building or equipment, or a remedial action to fix a safety issue, is left unresolved.
(Broken window = broken business!)

– A bad relationship between coworkers is not resolved.

– A poor policy that hurts morale is never challenged or changed.

ALessonForManagersThese difficulties can be found in many organizations. And the manager in charge never takes action to the detriment of the entire enterprise.

Well, I have a thought for all you managers who ignore long-standing problems, “You are what you tolerate.” That’s right, if you are a manager and you ignore a problem, you own the problem, YOU ARE THE PROBLEM!

If there is continual gossip and backstabbing in your business, “YOU are a backstabbing gossip.”

Very simply, a manager is charged with facing problems and dealing effectively with them. If you are a manager, and have unresolved problems and conflicts, it’s time to act. A manager’s inaction speaks as loudly as action. Not dealing with issues sends the message that you don’t consider them to be issues. Then what do you get? More issues. A good manager communicates the parameters of what IS and IS NOT acceptable behavior for employees, work environment, equipment maintenance, etc.

You are what you tolerate!


Terry Corman
Firehouse CEO