12 August 2009

Professional sport not worth a zac*

Clearly, the boss of Aussie Home Loans, John Symond "gets it": reputation management, that is. It's also quite clear the that boss of the ARL and CEO of the Melbourne Storm don't.

How many more times do rugby league players have to transgress normal levels of decency before something is done to reverse the situation?

Storm player Greg Ingliss, it seems, can do no wrong, despite allegedly assaulting his girlfriend. As the Storm chief said: "He has a future in rugby League."

What I can't fathom is why this behaviour continues to be tolerated. These are (apparently) "professional" sports people. Sport is their job. If it was you or I, we would have been sacked long ago.

As a society we really do have to question our own values when we continue to be part of this sham that is "professional" sport. I certainly wouldn't give a zac to watch the game.

Of course, other sports are no better. Over here in WA we have the case of State and Australian player Luke Pomersbach allegedly running amok in two alcohol-related hit-and-run incidents. They weren't his first run-ins with the law.

It seems the attitude of administrators are to let these people continue to play. Winning, it seems, is all that matters.

At least the Cronulla club has the "guts" to sack their troublemakers. The club now is in last place. But coach Ricky Stuart says it was the right thing to do for the game.

Stuart obviously "gets it".

*A zac is sixpence (now five cents)

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The PR Lab is a consultancy, specialising on research, reputation management, social media, media relations and the development of measurable strategies that produce results. It is run by Dr Greg Smith, a former journalist and PR professional. Greg worked on daily newspapers in Sydney, Brisbane and Perth. He held senior PR positions in the Australian Defence Force, Sydney Olympics and national not-for-profits. He has also lectured in PR at Edith Cowan University and the University of Notre Dame Australia.