The way Volkswagen is handling the Dieselgate is a very good example of proper crisis management and seems coming from a crisis management handbook (such as “Master of disaster“): once discovered, the company neither denied the facts nor tried to hide it, announced an independent review, fired the culprits, called-in a new, serious manager started cooperating with the authorities, saved the money for the inevitable fines and damages.
This way Volkswagen has been able to keep the public outcry under control because no collateral damages – such as deep burying evidences, threatening or bribing involved people, further doctoring information etc. – have been suffered, thus helping the company recover its image – and customer base – faster.
Don’t take it personal. This is the mantra we’re all taught when entering the professional business. By don’t taking things “personally” – cognoscenti say – we are more independent, target-oriented, able to better work in a team.
But in the meantime, by not “taking things personally”, assignments are something that ends daily at 5 p.m. no matter what, companies are just a place to leave from as soon as a well paid (in power or money when and if a) job is found, work is not filled with passion, creativity and personal involvement. Greed and Laziness become your best buds and complaints become your only conversation topic.
On the contrary, if you “take it personal” the pivot of your world become the exploiting of your creativity, appreciation for a well done task and sharing your wisdom with your peers. As an accomplished craftsman or artist you put yourself in the things you do and things you do speak about you better than any fancy written CV.
Think of it, next time somebody hints you not to “take it personal”.
Gian Antonio Stella, a well known journalist whose articles are published by the most important Italian daily newspaper, Il Corriere della sera, just published a new book: Bolli, sempre bolli, fortissimamente bolli, about the bureaucracy cancer in Italy.
At the beginning of the book (Kindle location 1853, to be precise) he extensively quotes La Legge di Parkinson, the Italian translation I did of the British classic “Parkinson’s Law“.
Damage Control and Crisis Management aren’t easy to understand and master without actual field experience. Nevertheless reading good books help the introduction to these fundamental tools for a legal adviser.
Master of Disasters is one of the books that should stay on everybody’s desk, read as a Bible.