The First Lesson in Leadership: Everything Wrong is Your Fault
The global Chinese retail giant website, alibaba.com, was rocked by scandal when it was found that approximately 2300 sellers on the website were involved in fraudulent transactions, involving the display of the “Gold supplier” credentials. This was perpetuated by the involvement of some of Alibaba’s staff including Sales managers, and supervisors.
In brief, a Gold Supplier should have been checked by Alibaba to ensure that its a legitimate business, and the number of years on Alibaba would be displayed. That’s usually taken as a sign of trust from potential buyers.
In the wake of the scandal/fraud, Alibaba’s Chief executive officer(CEO) David Wei and the Chief Operating Officer, Elvis Lee, resigned from their positions as CEO and COO. However, these two people were in no way involved in the fraud. They took no money, and had no knowledge of the scams from the “authentication” department.
So, some may ask. If they were not involved in the scam, why should they resign? And the answer comes from a simple managerial maxim.
Everything Wrong Is The Leader’s Fault.
If there was fraud in one department of the business, it the leaders fault for not enacting audit systems to check for this. It was their fault for this management oversight and that goes for every family, company, department, state or country.
If a country is impoverished, its the leaders fault. They have failed to remove the obstacles to business in the country. That leader has failed to remove banking and financial hindrances from potential entrepreneurs. Its the leader’s fault if business grants are not available for the ordinary man and are not promoted as a part of a business economy. Its the leader’s errors if cheap imports shuts down a large part of the domestic manufacturing or retail sectors, and its the leaders negligence if there is no Research and Development to aid the local manufacturing sector. Everything starts with and ends with the leader.
In September 2019, eBay’s CEO Devin Wenig resigned as CEO, citing differences with the board. The author of this article was a seller on eBay for many years. With PayPal’s massive foreign exchange fees, the original eBay’s business was shut down in 2013 as the accounting stats ran into red ink. After a few years, the eBay business was restarted. This time, eBay fees were still on the increase. There is a fee to list, there is a fee that’s charged when the item sells, and there is a fee to relist an item after every 30 days. There are also fees to open a store, and a massive US$599 “penalty” to shut down the store after 3 years in business. There were more being paid in fees that sales were being generated. To add insult, ,eBay’s listing algorithm appears to deliberately hides a sellers listings periodically. Out of 12000 items listed, only approximately 700 would show at any one time. In frustration, that new eBay store was shut down for the last time.
So, when Devin Wenig resigned, it was “Good Riddance.” He has failed to correct the issues named above. So, next time you hear of a failed institution, know that “Everything is the Leaders Fault.”