Note to Football Association – Let he without sin throw the first stone…

I don’t really like football.  In fact thats not true, I enjoy the game but I hate the dissent and lack of respect afforded match officials which would appear to be sanctioned by the Football Association who do little if anything effective to combat it.  I mean, you are the governing body, you set the rules, how hard can it be to say, “If you shout and scream in a referees face, jostle him and intimidate him you will get a 12 month ban from the professional game’. Problem solved.  Move on.  But no the FA remains largely toothless and useless.  
 
But wait.  I read a story about a referee who, in a televised match, had forgotten his coin and made the decision to determine kick-off by paying rock paper scissors with the two captains, rather than hold up kick-off whilst he went to get a coin.  Quirky, but sensible and no harm done right. 
 
Wrong.  Now the FA swings into action.  Joanna Stimpson, the women’s referee manager for the FA had this to say after the FA suspended the referee for 3 weeks! 
 
“He obviously thought it was the right thing to do, he probably walked away, or the second afterwards, thought it wasn’t the right thing to do. It’s not defendable. He should have been more prepared, he should have had a coin but he didn’t. It was disappointing, it’s not appropriate, it’s very unprofessional.”
 
Wow, thanks for that message of support Joanne, I am sure the thousands of amateur referees all over the country are nodding in approval at the justice of her comments!
 
You wouldn’t want to work for her would you; I mean 1 tiny lapse and bosh you’re suspended, publicly humiliated and probably career ended.  Quite aside from the shocking lack of leadership and appalling values demonstrated by Joanne, what message is this sending out to the public at large.  I read “At the FA, we only accept perfection”. 
 
Well, perhaps the FA needs to hold the mirror up and look at the role they play in driving ethics and standards and championing appropriate behaviour in the game – before publicly slagging off and punishing 1 match official for what was in reality a minor infringement that had zero impact on the result and if anything added to the game for spectators! 
 
I am not sure our Artificial Intelligence could help Joanne learn how to lead with better EQ!  But it can certainly guarantee that where an organisation absolutely needs employees to learn what they are trained they learn and retain it.  Guaranteed!