Typically, the reasons for the firing of a G.M. are clear, either because the team has stunk or the organization has clumsily leaked the reasons in advance of the move. In Kansas City, it’s still not clear why the General Manager of a team that has made it to the playoffs three times in four years was dumped on the same day the head coach was extended.
According to Terez A. Paylor of the Kansas City Star, concerns about communication and management styles contributed at least in part to the seemingly abrupt decision to part ways with G.M. John Dorsey.
“John does stuff and doesn’t tell people why,” an unnamed source told Paylor regarding the decision to move on from a pair of executives, Trip MacCracken and Will Lewis, without much internal explanation. Another unnamed source told Paylor that Dorsey’s management style “could wear on people.”
“He’s not a big disciplinarian or big on chain of command, so people did what they wanted,” an unnamed source told Paylor.
“It’s more about his management skills,” another unnamed source told Paylor.
It’s unclear what was done to remedy the situation before taking the drastic step of firing a G.M. who had been getting the job done, or whether Dorsey had been put on notice of his deficiencies before termination became the right move for the Chiefs. The circumstances invite speculation that coach Andy Reid, who received an extension on the same day Dorsey got a pink slip, at a minimum approved of the move and at maximum wanted it. It’s also possible, however, that owner Clark Hunt simultaneously evaluated both men and decided that one should get extra additional years with the team and the other should get none.
Regardless, the termination happened so swiftly and surprisingly to people outside and inside the organization that it’s easy to wonder whether a man now accused of having a subpar management style was also the victim of substandard management practices.