In the business world, we see it happen all the time. Someone is not getting the job done in actuality, or in perception, and the person in charge is replaced. If for no other reason, to show those remaining that the status quo is not acceptable, and that if ‘better’ is possible, then ‘good’ is not enough. It’s all about accountability. It’s not always fair, but life is not fair. Changes have to be made and no one is irreplaceable.
This recently was seen when Chief Information Officer Beth Jacob resigned in the wake of Target’s massive security breach. Her credentials are exemplary, and few are as good or better than Beth in her field of expertise, but when someone has to go, it’s the person who was at the helm of the ship when it went down.
It happened again just last week when security at the World Trade Center was breached twice within ten days, and the security official in charge (David Velazquez) “resigned”. With Major League Baseball starting this month, it will happen many more times as teams get off to a slow start and replace their managers. Teams want to become better, as do corporations, and accountability, building trust, and managing performance are core values.
It doesn’t work that way with the City of Naperville’s local government. Under performers and non-performers are allowed to stay. In fact, often times with a promotion in title, salary, responsibility, or pension level. Assistant city managers can become police chiefs, finance directors can become City Managers, and the beat goes on and on.
Numerous times over the past few years, Naperville city officials have had major missteps in their ability to govern. Ill-advised decisions have affected residents, and leadership has been dismal at best.
The city of Naperville entered into a 28-year long term contract with the IMEA (Illinois Municipality Energy Association) in 2007 which was a terrible decision. It will adversely effect Naperville residents and business until the year 2035. The contract has no performance provisions, and to make matters worse the contract is basically caste in stone. Naperville city officials “got played” by downstate politicians. Where was the city attorney, when this contract was approved? The current city manager (Doug Krieger) was Naperville’s finance director at that time, but apparently didn’t forewarn decision makers about the ‘iceberg ahead’.
Now as the City Manager, all he suggests to do is drastically raise electric rates as the solution. Most likely it will be voted upon this Tuesday night by the city council. Elections are not that far ahead, and this is the type of decision that voters remember. Until then, the city council still has an opportunity to deal with Doug Krieger as city manager. It’s time for Naperville city manager (Doug Krieger) to follow in the footsteps of Beth Jacob, David Velazquez, Lou Piniella, Mike Quaade, and Dale Sveum, (the last three being former Chicago Cub managers). The difference between Doug Krieger and Beth Jacob and Lou Piniella is that Beth and Lou knew what they were doing, and they were good at it, and they knew, along with their supervisors that it was time to leave.