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Employee Relations 101 - Has Your Morale Killer (Terrell Owens) Turned the Corner?

If you've worked in HR for more than a year, you've dealt with this situation.  An employee has largely been regarded as a morale killer among other employees, but retained because he/she has "special skills" that are difficult to replace.  So, the company keeps them around as long as the production is there.

Over time, the production remains positive, but you gradually hear less and less about them being a cancer.  Maybe you even see them do something positive for another teammate.  Have they turned the corner?  Are they suddenly all grown up?  Do you trust them as you do other employees, or do you always remember how they lashed out at others when things didn't go their way?

So the world turns with Terrell Owens, NFL receiver Diva for the Dallas Cowboys.   After the Cowboys' recent loss in the playoffs, TO cried when it appeared reporters might question the judgment of QB Tony Romo.  Sure he was wearing shades when he did it - but he CRIED....

Nice, except it's hard to forgot how he assassinated former teammates, Jeff Garcia and Donovan McNabb.

What's your take?  Can you trust employees who have had scorched earth policies towards other employees in the past, or is the damage too extreme to recover from?

Take a look at the two clips (first is from his time with the Eagles where his agent had to hold the press conference for him, second is the emotional TO at the Cowboys' recent press conference) - and decide whether you would trust TO as a normal employee/citizen in your organization....

Comments

Wally Bock

It's certainly possible for people to change, though it's more likely if the people are young when they do their evil dance and mature their way to better behavior. Even so, you'd be an idiot to completely trust anyone with a "scorched earth" past right away. Time will tell the tale. It's a variant of what my mother used to tell her always-up-to-something son when it was important not to throw wrenches into the social machinery. "Even you," she would say with her steely look, "can behave for an hour or so."

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