Wednesday, June 5, 2013

John Tortorella's a Real Bully. Don't Be Like John Tortorella.

I am so glad I didn't have to learn this lesson the way that John Tortorella did: no one likes a bully.

Last week, the New York Rangers unexpectedly fired Tortorella as their coach. He is infamous for showing utter contempt to the media, but reports have surfaced that his abuse of players led to his ouster. Certainly, speaking hard truths to players is part of a coach's job, but criticizing them in public? Not so much.

If you act like a mean jerk, eventually people will assume you're a mean jerk and tune you out. It's the fast track to alienation--from your job, but also from family and friends. Reading about Tortorella reminded me of how important it is to keep my own abrasiveness in check, both at home and at work (because I love my family, like my job, and want to keep both).

Tortorella's now-former boss said after the firing, "Every coach has a shelf life." Because of his behavior, Tortorella greatly shortened his. The next time you want to have at someone, think about whether it's worth it. It probably isn't. Don't be like John Tortorella.