Donald Trump against the yardstick of leadership

The whole world is, more than other times, interested in the presidency of Donald Trump. It is clear that Donald Trump’s campaign was unconventional and the hardest and roughest since decades. Despite the scandals, rumors and opportunistic actions he won the elections, against all predictions. But especially his behavior adds question marks to the way he will lead the United States in the coming four years.
But especially with the behavior we already saw we can make a prediction if he will be a good or excellent leader in his presidency. I won’t go into his plans and ideas, because that is the playing field of the politicians but only put his behavior against the yardstick of leadership.
Nowadays leadership is becoming more and more important. Not only in business, but also in countries. Leadership sets a timestamp for the future and leads people and cultures to an unpredictable future. Good leadership leads people to that unpredictable future with a positive attitude. Based on facts, and after consultation a leader takes his decisions. And people like to follow those leaders. Bad leadership creates fear, conflicts and a growth of uncertainty.       
Let’s have a look to what good leadership means against Donald Trump’s behavior. In his book ‘From Good to Great’ from Jim Collins he describes that the best leaders are humble but have also a clear ambitious determination to their upmost best to act on what is good for the company. In the case of Donald Trump he repeatedly said: ‘Let’s make America great again’. That makes clear that his opinion is that America is not great anymore. But he makes also clear that he is doing it for Americans, on his way. When his way represents the most of the Americans that would be a good thing. So, on this point, a plus for Donald Trump. The other part of excellent leaders is their humbleness. I think that most people agree that Donald Trump is not humble at all. It is all about him and he even is proud on the fact that he can use his power to intimidate other people. What do you think of this tweet of him: ‘Sorry losers and haters, but my I.Q. is one of the highest -and you all know it! Please don't feel so stupid or insecure, it's not your fault’. Scoring on humbleness, no not at all.     
Even if Donald Trump has a high IQ, good and excellent leaders have a high Emotional Intelligence. A lot of smart people fail at leadership because they score high in IQ (Intelligence Quotient or knowledge) but low on Emotional Intelligence (EI). IQ is not a differentiator for success. Emotional Intelligence is four times as important in terms of overall success. EI is the differentiating factor. 90% of the difference between outstanding and average leaders is linked to EI. There are 4 items important in Emotional Intelligence: Self-awareness, self-management, social awareness and relationship management. Emotional self-awareness means that you can recognize your emotions and how they affect your performance. If someone is balanced, shows emotions but doesn’t exaggerate like shouting or looking for conflicts and reflects on himself then you can say that he has self-awareness. An example why I think that Donald Trump has a low self-awareness is what happened last week. When you count all votes Hillary Clinton has obtained more votes country-wide; Trump owes his presidency to the system of the Electoral College. Suggestions on computer fraud have now led to a recount in Wisconsin. It is not a real threat to Trump. You would expect that the president-elect would have a quiet response. But Trump is going to mow. He claims to have won nationwide, ' If you subtract the millions of people who voted ' illegal (literally his tweet was: In addition to winning the Electoral College in a landslide, I won the popular vote if you deduct the millions of people who voted illegally). That reaction shows two risks of his presidency: a lack of care (for his assertion is missing any evidence) and a lack of self-control. I can give you a lot of tweets and other reactions in which Trump reacts furious on critical notes on his behavior or plans. So much that I tend to say that Mr. Trump has a narcissistic personality disorder.
If a leader is also able to adapt to change, sets challenging goals, takes calculated risks and look for ways to do things better you can count on it that he has also a good self-management. Till now the plans of Donald Trump limit themselves to one-liners without that he gives a good fundament and fact in those plans. Till now he doesn’t care about facts. When he doesn’t like them he ignores or change them.  
The other two competences within EI are related to the leader and others. Leading is all about relationships. And the role of the leader is to set norms, culture and environment for everyone. Therefor he needs to be empathic, so he is sensing others’ feelings and perspective and takes an active interest in their concerns. Donald Trump sparked outrage by suggesting veterans with PTSD (post-traumatic stress syndrome) aren’t ‘strong’ and ‘can’t handle it’. And that in a country veterans are honored as heroes. And there are more examples that I can give to prove that the president-elect is not empathic at all.
The last what makes the difference in leadership is relation management. We can look to a leader in how he is resolving conflicts or able to negotiate. Good leaders bring disagreements into an open communication and can find solutions in which everyone can endorse. Just google on ‘Donald Trump Tweets Losers’ and you will find dozens of examples of people who calls losers and insult. On YouTube, you can find all kind of examples of (world) leaders he shamelessly insults.
Looking to his behavior I tend to believe Donald Trump has a Narcissistic Personality Disorder. People with this disorder need excessive admiration and have a lack of empathy. They have a grandiose sense of self-importance (e.g., exaggerates achievements and talents, expects to be recognized as superior without commensurate achievements). They believe that they are "special" and unique and can only be understood by, or should associate with, other special or high-status people (or institutions). They are interpersonally exploitative, i.e., takes advantage of others to achieve his own ends. They are often envious of others or believes that others are envious of them. They show arrogant, haughty behaviors or attitudes.   
Exactly what his presidency is going to mean, is still largely shrouded in mystery. But the first signs don’t make me comfortable. And then to think that his actual exercise of power has yet to begin.

There are no comments