Great post recently from Seth Godin entitled "I Only Work Here." Seth comments on how he's had conversations with multiple people in the same company who have all used the phrase "well, I only work here," when responding to issues that Seth has brought up to them regarding their company. One person even stated to Seth, "All I do is work here. They pay my salary, but I'm me, not them."
Reality is," You Are Them," whether you like it or not. As Seth writes, "If you are not proud of where you work, go work somewhere else. You don't get the benefit of the brand when it's hot without accepting the blame of the brand when it's wrong." What a great statement.
This is a great reminder that we really can't separate ourselves from the brand, organization, movement or initiative that we are working on, for or under. Accept that responsibility, and if things need to change, be willing to step up and do something about it. Or leave.
"All I do is work here. They pay my salary, but I'm me, not them."
No, Susan, you are them.
The reason your brand is falling apart is because so many of your colleagues are saying the same thing, denying the same responsibility. Consumers don't believe (or care) that there are warrens and fiefdoms and monarchies within your company. All they know is that you leverage that brand name every day, as you have for decades, but now, instead of using that brand to polish your reputation as an individual, you're being forced to accept responsibility for the actions of others.
Do you really think someone who worked for Bernie Madoff will go far with this line? "I'm not Bernie, I just worked with him every day and took a great salary when times were good..." Not sure what the difference is. It's even worse in your case, because you know what's happening. You know, but you don't want to do anything about it.
If you're not proud of where you work, go work somewhere else. You don't get the benefit of the brand when it's hot without accepting the blame of the brand when it's wrong