It is the #1 network television show. It is fighting terrorists, fighting crime, fighting traitors, fighting everything…on steroids.
There is Gibbs—the world’s smartest crime fighter—who is ALWAYS right. (Ever worked for someone like that?) There is (was, now gone) Ziva, the lovely ex-Israeli agent who can take out Chuck Norris, Bruce Lee and Steven Seagal (even when he was young and menacing)—all at the same time without breaking a sweat. There is Abby—everyone’s lovable favorite, even with her tattoos and loud metal rock music. McGee is the “tech geek” and “Ducky” is the medical geek and trivia repository.
Then, there is DiNozzo—the jerk. He is completely self-absorbed and self-centered. He is rude, a snoop (searching his coworker’s desks, etc.), an over-the-line teaser who loves to humiliate everyone— especially McGee (but never Gibbs). He steals food, brags incessantly, is condescending to everyone (except Gibbs), gossips, and loves to make everyone look like a fool. He is just the kind of guy you love to work with, right?
On TV, it works. Gibbs and the others put up with DiNozzo because…well, because it is TV. In the real world, DiNozzo would poison the chemistry of the team, hurt productivity and effectiveness, and make most everyone dread coming to work. In the end, the best and brightest wouldn’t come to work; they would move on.
Generally you can’t reform a jerk; you can only fire them. You can wear yourself out trying, but in the end…. Google has a “no jerk” policy and by the way, ranks #1 on Fortune’s Best Places To Work list. The best and brightest stay at Google. Maybe that is one of the reasons Google is now #4 on the most valuable companies list and will soon pass Microsoft and Exxon, trailing only King Apple.
The question is: would you fire DiNozzo? I would. Let me know what you would do.
[By the way, when you do fire DiNozzo, don’t do it with a post it note, do it in person.]
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© Copyright 2014 by Dick Wells, The Hard Lessons Company
"The best way to lead people into the future is to connect with them deeply in the present."
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