Industrial espionage threatens Porsche at his secret heart: "Foreign intelligence approaches Porsche employees via their Facebook accounts", states Rainer Benne, Porsche's Head of Security.
That's why Porsche decided to ban all private Facebook, Ebay, Google Mail, Xing or social network activities of their employees from now on.
Hm, but what will be next? How to stop people from talking about Porsche secrets? Kill the business-wise connections right after the private ones? Confiscate their employee's private laptops, smartphones, telephones? Because they are means of communication, too? Because they carry photographic devices?
Whatever Porsche does there still will be a private life. People will talk to others, about stuff they shouldn't. You cannot stop that by taking away communication devices. You cannot stop that by monitoring their work life.
And: how many of those 13,000 employees would trade a secret? And everybody's horizons get limited for that? What's next? Collect their brains at the front desk?
Leadership - not only at Porsche's, but everywhere - has just one choice: the organization needs a different culture, a culture of openness, of trust and loyalty.
You won't stop people from doing wrong by prohibition! And the negative side-effects of those bans will outweigh the desired results by far. You start to install a culture of interdiction and surveillance. That won't work.
Individuals need to be trusted to do a better job. They need to be valued and cherished. They do not need to be limited and punished.
Individuals must feel responsible and respected to be truly creative and innovative, productive and effective.
Porsche - and all other corporations - should think twice whether to really limit communication or even open their drawbridges and chinese walls and create a culture of respect and value in these great times where human's individuality, independence, and impatience are increasing with unprecedented power - due to, ah, digitalization, the web, and mobility!
The times have changed - so should leadership.