What Roger Goodell Won’t Teach You About Leadership
Trill or Not Trill?
The NFL Season pops off tonight! I couldn’t be more excited for football to begin. This summer instead of free agency and training camp, stories about the commissioner dominated the airwaves and interwebs. Let me start by saying, Roger Goodell is a SuckaMC of massive proportions. When I think about leadership, he isn’t the first to come to mind. Despite the fact that he runs the largest most profitable sport in America, there are so many chinks in his NFL armor. Leaders are faced with daily challenges, so I could only imagine the difficulty of being the commissioner of the National Football League. With that said, he still has a job to do and with his recent decisions, I think you could learn a thing or two about leadership through the Goodell lens.
1. Making Decisions for the Look.
Ray Rice TKO’d his fiancée into another area code and Goodell suspended him for 2 games. We all thought it was a weak punishment to begin with. A video then comes out displaying the brutality for the world to see and what does the commissioner do? Indefinite suspension. Goodell was fine with a paltry punishment until the images of Rice throwing haymakers made the commish look bad. This ruling was eventually overturned by a judge because Ray Rice was essentially punished twice. All for the look and all of the fails, Mr. Goodell.
It’s not easy busting up a party as an RA when your friends are in the room. As a student government president, the administration might want you to make a statement or do something that doesn’t meet the needs of your student body. Making a decision for the look will always come back to haunt you. During this time of duress, trust the rules in place and whatever training you’ve received. Be authentic and always keep it 100. Your followers, friends and constituents will respect you more for it. Being cognizant of your image is important but when the idea of “how will this make me look,” becomes the primary factor in decision making, you’re in trouble.
2. Stunting Because You Can
Goodell and the NFL were embroiled in the Ray Rice scandal when Adrian Peterson’s child abuse case fell into their lap. Here was a chance to show the world that you are totally against children getting beat and Goodell hit us with more SuckaMC behavior. Peterson was suspended indefinitely and arbitrarily on a catch all player conduct rule. As per usual a federal judge overturned it and down goes the commissioner. This has, “I do what I want,” written all over it. Goodell punished Peterson not based on rationale but because he could.
As a student leader there will many instances when you are the authority. You might have the power to decide how to spend the club’s budget or you’re in charge of disciplining a floor. Having such responsibility doesn’t mean rule blindly with an iron fist. An ability to make decisions was likely a huge reason you were placed in a leadership position. Doing things that simply make you look good will eventually make you look bad. As a leader one must remember, power trips will always trip you up. This isn’t all about you, it’s about us. Such behavior leads to a lack of trust and will weaken your ability to progress.
3. Know How to Take an L.
Commissioner SuckaMC has no clue how to take an L. DeflateGate was lot less important than it was made out to be. He punished Brady with another arbitrary suspension and guess what? He took an L. As per every poor decision Goodell has made someone fought him. Tom Brady decided to not play these Reindeer games and he bested the commissioner. Take those 4 games and shove it. Goodell took the L and now there are reports he won’t show up to the opening game of the season to watch defending champs. Take your L with a head up high Roger.
You won’t always be right. The troublemaking students know the rules better than anyone and can easily trip you up. Losing an election doesn’t mean you stop being a leader. Know when you’ve been defeated and learn from that. Losses are meant to make you stronger. That can only happen if you are willing embrace the toughest moments. Unlike Goodell, don’t try to turn an obvious loss into a moment to flex your muscle.
4. Lying is for Sucka MCs
Keep lies under the bed and one day mom will be cleaning. If that mom is anything like mine, then the truth will be found.
New evidence has surfaced alleging that Goodell hid information and destroyed documents related to The Patriots Spygate case in 2007. No shock, but Goodell potentially lied to cover up for his good friend Robert Kraft. The entire case has spiraled into the abyss and the one who comes out looking the worst is the commissioner.
Some will convince you that lying to protect your ass or others is no big issue. As a Hall Director, I once worked with an RA who was reportedly drinking alcohol with underage residents. She denied and in essence lied till the end. A day after meeting with her, someone anonymously placed photos in my mailbox, of said RA holding beers and pouring alcohol into the cups of freshmen. Had she been upfront we likely wouldn’t have been fired her. Policies stated that probation could have been enough. She switched up the story in every way possible. The infraction combined with the lying shut the door on the case. More darkness comes to light then one thinks. We have to strive to be honest to preserve our integrity and legitimacy. You can’t effectively maintain motivation with lies as a driving force in your decision making.
Good Luck Roger. May your SuckaMC tendencies be gone.
Stay trill, folks.