Mark Cuban, the owner of the Mavericks, released a statement regarding a Sports Illustrated Investigative Report which characterized the culture of the organization as “a real-life Animal House.” On Tuesday, Sports Illustrated compiled a report based off of various interviews from individuals who were close to the organization, claiming harassment was rampant through the franchise. Cuban, owner of the Mavs for the past eighteen years, claimed he was unaware of this culture of harassment, and he was ‘embarrassed’ of this unacceptable behavior.
Cuban has been apart of the business world for his entire adult life and has garnered respect from the corporate and sports worlds alike. Having lived and thrived in the ‘boys club’ culture of business– I’m sure he’s witnessed harassment and ‘locker room talk’ that circulates within both worlds. His statement reads, “…there’s a problem in the Mavericks organization and we’ve got to fix it. That’s it. And we’re going to take every step. It’s not something we tolerate. I don’t want it. It’s not something that’s acceptable. I’m embarrassed, to be honest with you, that it happened under my ownership, and it needs to be fixed. Period. End of story.”
As the owner of the organization, he’s at the very top of the ladder, it’s quite possible that he earnestly did not know about the culture of harassment within his organization. People are on their best behavior when the boss walks in the room. However, it is his responsibility to ensure that his employees are people of upstanding character. It is his responsibility to hire individuals to monitor the behavior of his employees– from the front office to the locker room.
What’s your take on Cuban’s response to this report? Is he taking the easy way out by claiming unawareness of the issue? After all, he’s a smart guy, whose been in the industry for his entire life, is it really possible he was this clueless? Did he instill a checks and balances system to make sure this behavior was rooted out of his organization, prior to this report? If so, was that system flawed in extracting the negative behavior? Having been apart of the upper echelon of business for many years, he has to be aware that this behavior is prevalent. Regardless, his statement made it clear that he will remedy the situation moving forward.
Photo: Boston Herald