• Aryeh Brickner

How a World Series championship was tainted by employees undermining their boss!

The big news out of baseball this week was the firing of A.J. Hinch and Jeff Luhnow, the manager and GM of the Houston Astros, due to the systematic cheating and stealing of pitch signs using technology. Ironically, neither man was deemed the “mastermind” behind the cheating and reports even suggested Hinch attempted to discourage it by breaking the TV monitor used for the cheating multiple times.

We’re all familiar with the expression “The buck stops here”, and that is seemingly why both these men holding the top organizational positions were dismissed. Managers must be responsible for the behavior and actions of the people they lead. While Hinch may have destroyed the monitors in question he took no further action as to discipline and or fire those who were involved. So, either he’s as complicit as they were or he’s simply an ineffective leader.

When employees undermine managerial authority, it can lead to chaos and disorder within an organization. This can be especially so when managers turn a blind eye to deceitful behavior. Some managers feel uncomfortable exercising their authority in these situations or are worried it will look like they have an ego because the issue is undermining THEIR authority. However, it’s not always about themselves. It’s about respecting all managerial positions within a company and therefore it’s important to take a stand.

There isn’t a person alive who thinks this scandal doesn’t taint the Astros 2017 championship. Maybe they would have won had they played fairly. We’ll never know. Hinch might not be responsible for the sign-stealing but he’s certainly responsible for stealing the winning feelings of a championship from the organization by not taking a harsher stance as a manager should.

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