A report says that officials in Major League Baseball have been frustrated by a lack of minority hires in management positions.
So now the league is going to take over race based hiring and intends to force more minorities into baseball management positions, even if they have to create new positions or change qualifications for existing openings.
News of the new effort revealed that MLB officials are upset that executive search service Korn Ferry hasn’t picked any minorities for front office positions across the league. Officials say they will sideline the headhunter firm and take over the search for prospective hires themselves, according to USA Today.
“The Korn Ferry relationship on minority hiring, we’ve really shifted,” Commissioner Rob Manfred said at the recent owners meeting. “Their involvement at the industry level is going to be curtailed on these types of projects because, as we went along in the process, we came to realize there’s a potential for conflicts when they’re doing searches and doing work for us centrally.”
Despite their obvious success having just won the World Series, the Chicago Cubs received a push from Manfred to change its front office makeup in order to place minorities there. The commissioner also badgered the Professional Baseball Scouts & Coaches Association to do the same.
Aside from a lack of minority recommendations, Korn Ferry faced other problems, namely an insular pool of candidates. According to USA Today’s Bob Nightengale, “Mostly all the hires had backgrounds with the Cleveland Indians, or had a relationship with Toronto Blue Jays president Mark Shapiro, the Indians’ former president and GM.” And few minorities formed part of the recommendations.
Whatever the failings of Korn Ferry, it is clear that MLB intends to make a drive for diversity over meritocracy. it will be no less than a quota system for baseball.
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston or email the author at firstname.lastname@example.org.