Another Corporate Shake-Up

Last week, the media world was shocked by a shake up at NBC.The abrupt departure of Tamron Hall, host of MSNBC Live with Tamron Hall and co-host of the Today Show left us scratching our heads. Fans and followers alike were all shocked. But should we be? Stories such as this happen on a daily basis for far less known people. However, it serves as a reminder about all the other shake ups and changes happening in the past few weeks such as Ursula Burns from Xerox and Rosalind Brewer from Wal-mart.

However as Forbes writer, Madeline Berg’s article so eloquently shows, at the at end of the day, no matter what, it’s all about the bottom line and business is business. Her article states:

“While fans may be disappointed, Today probably isn’t too concerned. Today ended 2016 on top in the lucrative 25-54 demographic, beating ABC’s Good Morning America and CBS This Morning, and the show accounts for over 50% of NBC’s revenue from news programming, sources told FORBES. The revenue-driver (according to the latest Pew Research Center data, it brought in over $435 million in 2015) has lost prominent anchors before, such as Katie Couric and Ann Curry, and Hall has only been with the show for a few years.

“The Today Show is a leader in the morning time frame, and it has been for a long time” says Beth Ellen Egan, an advertising professor at Syracuse University’s Newhouse School. “It has lost a lot of big people over the years and has still recovered. If I were … a big early morning advertiser, I wouldn’t be thinking twice.”
This statement isn’t new but the sentiment is disheartening. To have someone say “I wouldn’t be thinking twice” about a job you loved, did amazingly well and gained the love, support and following of many fans and advertisers might cause many to feel not valued. But I applaud and fully support Tamron Hall’s decision to not take NBC’s multi-million dollar deal to take her show to a “cable” network. Clearly, she knows her value!

Here are 4 things to know the next time you are caught in a corporate shake-up:

Know You Have Options – One of my biggest pet peeves is watching people stay in roles and with organizations where they are tolerated instead of appreciated. For years, I listened to others complain about their company, compensation, leadership and the list goes on. However, they continue with the same company and make no real attempt at making real changes. I always counter with – “You do know you have options right?” Career path and trajectory are dictated by you and you alone. Once a person comes to the moment when they realize they have options, they will not stay a day longer than they should.This might even mean taking time for yourself to figure out what’s next like Tamron. But NEVER be so fearful of your future that you continue to stay where it’s unfruitful.

Know Your Value – It’s easier to turn down “great deals or opportunities” when you know your value. The key to evaluating any counter offer is realizing that your value isn’t just your salary. Of course compensation is a huge factor if you understand the value you bring. But that is only one part of the equation. Does the pending offer align with your talents? Are the responsibilities in alignment with the time and energy you are willing to give? And most importantly, does the company and/or leader value you and all you bring?

Know Your Goals – “Show me the money” should not always be your go to. When you are clear on your goals and objectives, you will be able to identify the right opportunities. You will ask yourself – “Does this opportunity align with my goals and future self? If not, will it position me to get there? I was offered an “opportunity” during a company shake up; and yes the money was right. Despite the monetary aspect, my boss knew my goals and talents were more far reaching than the available positions.

Know Who You Are – No matter how much you love what you do or who you do it for, never allow either to define you. I’ve seen countless executives be devastated by downsizing. Their whole identity was wrapped up in an organization they gave most of their adults years too. They don’t see the shake up as business as usual. To them, it’s a betrayal and feels personal. Somehow along their journey they forgot the “business is business” rule applies to everyone. I always advise all my clients to build a personal brand that extends beyond who they work for. Don’t build your ego or reputation on an organization. Build your own brand so when you walk away you can ask “What’s Next?” and not “Why Me?”

Being affected by corporate shake-ups are never easy. It might feel like you were blindsided, betrayed, or even belittled. Don’t allow those thoughts to take over your sense of self and survival. Knowing your options, value, goals, and who you are allows you to make more rational decisions for your future without fear of failure.