Responsibility image courtesy of Rob Campbell Leadership.
Responsibility image courtesy of Rob Campbell Leadership.

Who’s To Blame When We’re All Guilty To Some Degree?

Before anyone jumps to judgment, it is no secret that longtime Q107 radio personality John Derringer has fought demons for most of his professional life, and if half of what is said against him is true, then one has to ask why professional help wasn't forthcoming–or why he wasn’t cautioned or taken off the air to recoup.

I can't say for sure, but what I know of Derringer suggests he has an addictive personality and anger management problems. I can't say, but it seems apparent to me that he fed off adrenalin to keep the creative rush flowing and with a seven-figure income, I can see why he felt the need to feed the beast inside him.

What is eliciting equal attention with the recent blaze of headlines and social media posts is that his bosses may have known what is being alleged and seemingly did nothing to caution him or fix the problem.

Along the way, a lot of other names are being dragged into the story. I can’t speak for them all, and there appears to be enough damning hearsay to suggest matters have been out of hand for a very long time, but one needs some basic facts before making assumptions or, worse, casting aspersions about people that have been at Corus who perhaps tried to make a difference.

I suggest that some did try, and either their efforts were thwarted or ignored, and these people eventually left the organization because they could no longer condone going to work in what appears to have been a combustible and toxic environment. It should be reiterated here that all allegations and social media comments are unproven, so all are alleged unless otherwise proven.

There’s also the question about what, if anything, prevented HR from acting decisively if there was enough evidence to conclude that a pattern of verbal behaviour was abusive.

If John Derringer is guilty as charged, it is because he was protected or, for want of a better word, enabled. Whenever these kinds of stories flare, invariably there are victims, and invariably a cast of people in the know who turned a blind eye and let matters get out of hand.

Take me to task, but my infrequent dealings with Derringer suggest there was/is a pretty decent person at heart. His alleged toxicity was/is likely due to his having an addictive personality and a chemical imbalance. His ascendency within the corporation and prize position suggest complaints filed against him were either dismissed at the top or, worse, treated as forgivable. Just my take based on opinions vented by former peers on social media.

If the independent inquiry finds culpability, Corus needs to offer an apology to those people who have been wronged, and it is suggested that it wasn't exclusively females who were caught in this unconscionable disaster. An apology, and perhaps even compensation for damage caused to careers.

The allegations are serious and need to be addressed, not sugar-coated, and those at the top need to take ownership for what was going on, if true.

Whatever the case, whatever the outcome, it’s time people charged with responsibility take responsibility for the actions people in their charge do in the workplace.

It’s time we all looked inward and asked ourselves, are we enablers? How can we affect positive change in the workplace and in our daily lives?

Simple stuff that should be common sense that’s simply driven by the desire of wanting to do the right thing.

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