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Claudio Ranieri – did employee empowerment go too far?

Claudio Ranieri has departed Leicester City only months after leading the club to a spectacular Premier League triumph.

But what role did Foxes’ players have in his sacking?

Debate has raged over whether Leicester’s stars turned on the likeable Italian boss as the team struggled after last season’s fairytale.

Vice-Chairman Aiyawatt Srivaddhanaprabha insisted the decision to sack Ranieri came from the owners alone – and was quick to distance his players from the rumoured revolt.

“It is unfair that our players, who supported Claudio fiercely, are being accused of disloyalty,” he said.

But in his Guardian column, Chief Football Writer Paul Doyle presented another view; one that supports two-way dialogue and employee empowerment – in this case, football players.

He wrote: “Even if it were true that Leicester players expressed disagreement with the way Ranieri was running their title defence, is that so bad?

“It is a dumb strain of conservatism indeed that demands workers blindly follow their leader.

“Consultation in the workplace is usually a sign of enlightened rule and generates an empowering sense of shared responsibility.

“A workforce that feels its feedback is ignored can become less productive. Or play like oafs.”

In May 2016, just after Leicester were crowned Premier League title winners, IC Magazine managed to secure an exclusive interview with the people’s champion, Ranieri.

Speaking of his management style at the time, his tactics seemed to be those of someone who knows how good internal communication works.

He told us his approach was one of involvement, communication and employee empowerment.

“I just want everyone to feel involved – medical staff, sports science teams, our Chief Executive,” he said. “Everyday decisions or jobs – we are all part of the project.”

So, at least it seems that Ranieri and Doyle are singing from the same hymn sheet. Only on this occasion, it is rumoured not to have worked out so well for the former LCFC manager.