In recent weeks, we watched Pluto get demoted and Tom Cruise get snubbed....
With reality shows all over the place (featuring people getting eliminated from too many contests to track), getting kicked out is almost becoming de rigeur.
And now this week comes news of the latest in the revolving door at Hewlett Packard, whose board kicked out Carly Fiorina in 2005. HP's board chairwoman is getting the boot ("[Chairman Patricia Dunn]'s resignation follows a tidal wave of criticism . . .").
This spate of Getting Kicked Out spurs me on to a bunch of questions:
Why can't we do a better job of kicking out clients that are not strategically appropriate for our professional service businesses? Is it because we haven't done a good enough job of determining what our best competitive trajectories are and should be?
Why don't more of our professional leaders -- management and marketing -- outline the leadership goals that they intend to pursue, and why don't we give them at least some support for achieving those goals, or credit for the steps they have taken? Is it because they have no idea what their leadership goals could be, and no one else does either?
Perhaps I'm being too harsh. There is something perversely good about these public downfalls; if nothing else, they have given us all permission to pick up and move on, rather than hiding in shame and degradation. It's as if losing has lost its sting. Say hallelujah.
But clearly, there is something afoot regarding the cyclical nature of achieving personal and professional heights and the too-often precipitous plunges that we witness from there. And don't get me started on the shrinking tenure of professional service firm managing partners and senior marketers!
In the coming days, I plan to take a look at a new book called "Your Leadership Legacy," by my friends Rob Galford and Regina Maruca. Their key point, "why looking toward the future will make you a better leader today," offers some grounding to the whole phenomenon of "getting kicked out."
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