Know your place

If you’re a football fan, you’re probably following the epic war of words between one of Africa’s most popular footballers, the Ivorian Yaya Touré and his new Manager at Manchester City, Pep Guardiola.

If you’re a football fan, you’re probably following the epic war of words between one of Africa’s most popular footballers, the Ivorian Yaya Touré and his new Manager at Manchester City, Pep Guardiola.

It’s ugly and Touré’s Agent is not helping an already tense situation with his provocative remarks directed at Guardiola. We will have to wait and see if Guardiola makes good on his threat to deny Touré playing time until his agent apologises to the manager and the club. 

 

Here’s what I think. Touré has a point in demanding to be treated with respect, especially since he and Guardiola have history, with the former having left a previous club, Barcelona under similar circumstances and maintaining that he was treated unfairly by the same man and he probably was. What I think is a bad idea is Touré airing the dirty linen. 

 

He could have gone to his manager instead and talked about whatever grievances he has but now I fear he has burned that bridge and the only way is out. His contract will probably be paid out so he won’t lose much on that front considering that his weekly pay has been over £220,000 but at 33 years old, I doubt top clubs will be fighting to sign him. 

 

I don’t know if Touré knows this but he’s not really a key player to his team at the moment. Three or four years ago when he was at his peak, he could have said or done anything and got away with it but he’s not that player anymore. 

The club moved mountains to sign their new manager and if it comes down to who of the two stays, we all know who that will be. Reminds me of our regular workplaces where a new boss comes in and the applecart is bound to be upset because everyone has a different vision. 

Your position and contribution to the company may have been deemed crucial under a previous manager but the new boss may see things differently and may decide to let you go. 

In most workplaces though, you don’t see employees letting the new manager know “who they are and what they’ve done for the company in the past.” It’s usually people humbling themselves and sucking up to the new boss in order to keep their job. 

Of course there are cases of obnoxious managers who may just be out to create an environment of fear and let everyone know that they’re in charge and I guess employees should be able to stand up to any such unfair treatment. 

But the important thing is to know the right forum to channel your concerns. You don’t lash out and call the manager names in the presence of other staff because that will upset him or her and set you on a collision course. 

I know so many people who lost their jobs not because of poor performance but because of their attitude. A supervisor feels undermined, contacts Human Resource and the unlucky employee gets the call. I guess what I’m trying to say is that we all need to know our place. Not everybody is indispensable.

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