Saturday, March 5, 2011

3 Things We Can Learn from Charlie Sheen

We've probably all seen or at least heard news of the ranting of actor Charlie Sheen. Executives canceled his show, Two and a Half Men, after witnessing his behavior on and off the set. Some of the interviews of Charlie Sheen show an actor (employee) awaiting for show executives to come begging for him to come back to his job.

There are many lessons that can be gleaned from this, but three shout out for attention:

1.) An employee's action can bring down the house. While employers should take responsibility for their employees, there comes a time when you must sever the relationship. When an employee's actions away from work are not in line with the core values of the employer, it is time to make a change. The reputation of the business is carried with every person employed with that organization. There is room for change and forgiveness, but only if it is permanent and sincere.

2.) An employee's attitude can ruin a team. From what I've heard Charlie Sheen say in interviews, it appears that he believes he is the cat's meow. The top hat. The head cheese... you get the picture. He believes that the show cannot go on without him and that any success for the writers, producers, etc. was due to him. Attitudes like this can cause a team to suffer. Team members begin to distrust not only that person, but also leaders that allow that person to remain on the team.

3.) Outrageous activity gets attention. This third and final nugget is different from the other two in that it is a positive outcome of the Charlie Sheen circus. As soon as Sheen opened a recent Twitter account, he received a million followers the first day. Because of his mega-media coverage, whether good or bad, Sheen is in the spotlight. Obviously, you don't won't bad publicity for your business, but what about getting folks attention by announcing free lunch to the first 100 customers next Tuesday, or bring in a massage therapist to offer free neck and back massages from 1:00 to 3:00 (or whatever your slow time is). Create a buzz using your imagination. You don't have to shun off rehab, say that Alcoholics Anonymous is a cult and doesn't work, and have some porn stars move into your house to raise your kids to get attention. We're looking for positive ideas here.
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