Have you ever had one of those “Why did I do that?” moments. All of us have if we’re being even remotely honest with ourselves. That is much more difficult than the other side of that phrase: “Why did he do that?” or “Why did she do that?”.
Most of these kinds of situations involving other than ourselves are usually recognizable to us almost immediately. Our own involvement in such a situation is more difficult to see at the time and yet those situations continue to occur over and over. That is simply a part of our imperfect lives. When it involves a person who had an elevated status/reputation due to prior accomplishments, it hits home a bit harder.
I can recall situations where I thought I had made the right decision only to learn that there had been a better opportunity that surfaced after the first decision had been made known to the interested parties, or that the “right decision” simply had been the wrong decision. I had the relative luxury of not being in the public eye so that made extrication a bit easier but it was still an embarrassment personally for having been placed by self in such a position. And it was a valued learning experience after the embarrassment was overcome.
Being in the public eye makes such occurrences seem worse since there are, potentially, identifiable innocent people who will be hurt. There are those who might have thought that the decision-maker was very self-assured and would aways make the right decisions. There are others who never were fond of the individual for whatever reason(s) and they might get some perverse delight from the trials and tribulations of the other who was involved in the awkward situation.
And, there are those who see an opportunity for self and/or employer and pursue the opportunity to turn a potential loss into a supposed gain by stirring up the waters even before those waters have settled. This is, I guess, the world in which we live. We know that our world is, at best, imperfect. We know that there are times when we’ll be tested and we may not always ‘pass’ those tests.
We have such a situation currently in S.E. Wisconsin which I wish had not occurred…but it did occur. It involves a coach and two schools, one of which thought it had hired the coach until the other school made a better offer. These are situations fraught with issues that call into question what is proper and what is improper, and who was more to blame if there is any blame to be spread, and what message this sends, if any, to the young men who will be coached by the coach, admittedly a proven coaching talent. And it brings to mind the question of who was the instigator of this flip-flop? Was it the coach or the second school’s athletic director or both?
This is but another life lesson for those of us who are willing to learn.