Absurdly Driven looks at the world of business with a skeptical eye and a firmly rooted tongue in cheek. 


Bosses have so much more to worry about these days.

There's the vicissitudes of Wall Street, their own PR, their pesky employees, and their occasionally untrustworthy fellow directors.

And then along comes social media.

Suddenly, all employees have an instant loud-hailer that they can aim toward the whole world.

But what if one of your star employees decides to pout at you on, say, Twitter?

I wonder about this only because LeBron James, the Cleveland Cavaliers icon, suddenly decided to unfollow the team's Twitter account.

We surely all know the mordant pain of an unfollowing.

We thought someone was our friend, our colleague, someone who respected us, or at least someone who wanted to hear how we felt about the latest episode of Game of Thrones.

With one click, the person tells us that we're no one.

What did we do to deserve this, we wonder? Why would someone follow us one day and shun us the next?

What did we do?

It must be so much worse when your star employee turns up his social nose at you.

Star employees are supposed to be supremely committed to the cause. They're the company's standard bearers, beacons for corporate values and success.

Should the Cavaliers' general manager and owner call James in and ask him for an explanation?

Should they sink to their knees and beg him to follow the team again, because its Twitter feed--and therefore the Cavs' brand reputation--is being destroyed?

I fancy that, in this case, the team knows exactly why James is offering this gesture.

After all, earlier this month, James had already emitted several (less than) cryptic tweets that some construed as being critical of his teammates.

His quest to make up for his graceless departure from the team--you must remember his taking his talents to Miami--has so far been fruitless.

Though the Cavaliers made the NBA finals last year, rumors abound that its second-string stars--such as Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love--aren't entirely enamored with being James's teammates either.

The team plays with all the fluency of Stephen Colbert talking Finnish.

Their teamwork resembles that of the Republican Party during a debate.

They even managed to fire the coach who got them to the finals, as if it was somehow only his fault they didn't beat an opponent--the Golden State Warriors--that actually resembled a team.

And now here is the star player apparently doing something so spectacularly petty that you might expect it from a teen who's fed up with his mom following him on Facebook.

Perhaps the only true effect of James's unfollowing is to demonstrate a level of slight dysfunction within the Cavaliers organization. The management might have a lot more to deal with than this little antisocial symbol.

Twitter can offer an easy way to loudly and even crudely express your basest feelings.

It also offers the perfect place to demonstrate glorious passive aggression.

Some might muse that James's choosing this form of passive-aggressiveness is actually very much on brand.

After all, that's exactly what the Cavaliers showed in last year's NBA finals.

Oh, perhaps I forgot to mention it. I'm a Golden State Warriors fan.