So-called “regular” people get fired every day. It’s rarely front page news, unless it’s on a large scale. But when a star athlete gets the ax, that’s another story – especially when it involves controversy, scandal and illegal behavior.
When the Baltimore Ravens announced their decision to terminate the contract of running back Ray Rice yesterday, following the release of a brutal surveillance video in which he punches his then-fiancé in an Atlantic City elevator, no one was surprised. In fact, most wondered why it hadn’t happened sooner.
The truth is, if Rice were a “regular” guy, he would have been fired back in February when the incident occurred. Instead he was initially suspended for two games. Can you imagine if your boss found out you had committed such an atrocious crime and just told you not to come in for a couple of weeks? Chances are, you’d be in prison for much longer than that.
We talk all the time about the necessity of keeping your personal life separate from the working world. It helps you present a more professional image, and minimizes workplace distractions. And yet here is an instance where there is no separating personal from professional. Such a violent – not to mention illegal – act is something no employer would tolerate. It speaks to the character of Rice, which reflects on the Ravens organization and all of professional football. Cutting ties was their only option.
It’s tough to see what us “regular” people can take away from this upsetting story, but it is an extreme example of something we should all remember – an organization is only as good as its people. By striving to be the best possible version of yourself – on and off the proverbial “field” – you’ll make yourself a more desirable candidate and employee.
Photo credit: Ray Rice. 2014 (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)