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Constructive Conflict: Advice from the Mother of Modern Management

October 3, 2017

 

 

Two angry business colleagues during an argument, isolated on white background

When we look back to the 20th Century and reflect on great leaders, whether leading nations, organizations or social movements, there’s a tendency to produce a list with mostly male names. However, when one attempts to create a list of who were the great management thinkers during this period, it becomes even more skewed towards males. Names like Peter Drucker, John Kotter, Peter Senge, John Garner, James MacGregor Burns, Robert Greenleaf, Henry Mintzberg and Warren Bennis typically come to mind. But so, too, do names like Rosebeth Moss Kanter, Sally Helgesen and Margaret Wheatley.

The irony behind this is that the individual who is recognized as what Peter Drucker called “The Prophet of Management” was a woman: Mary Parker-Follett, who was born in 1868 and died in 1933. Because of her foresight and innovative thinking, the effects of which are still being examined today, Follett may rightly be called the Mother of Modern Management.

Unfortunately, Follett’s writings and numerous lectures were set aside for several decades. It was not until the 1990s when her writings and concepts were reinvigorated. I was introduced to her work by my advisor for my Master’s leadership thesis in the late nineties. I was amazed that someone 60-70 years previously was urging such concepts as shared (participative) leadership, constructive conflict resolution through what was called “integration,” and “power-with” opposed to “power-over.” Indeed, my Master’s thesis was on the subject of shared leadership.

Let’s hear a few passages from some of Follett’s writings and lectures. Once you read them, reflect on their relevance to today, especially whether her concepts are being practiced.

1949: (Freedom & coordination: Lectures in Business Organization)
“Some writers tell us that the leader should represent the accumulation and knowledge and experience of his particular group, but I think he should go far beyond this. It is true that the executive learns from everyone around him, but it is also true that he is far more than the depository where the wisdom of the group collects.

When leadership rises to genius it has the power of transforming, of transforming experience into power. And that is what experience is for, to be made into power. The great leader creates as well as directs power. The essence of leadership is to create control, and that is what the world needs today, control of small situations or of our world situation.

I have said that the leader must understand the situation, must see it as a whole, must see the inter-relationships of all the parts. He must do more than this. He must see the evolving situation….His wisdom, his judgement, is used, not on a situation that is stationary, but on one that is changing all the time.”

1925: (Paper first delivered to Bureau of Personnel Administration conference)
“There are three ways of dealing with conflict: domination, compromise and integration. Domination…is a victory of one side over the other. This is the easiest way of dealing with conflict, but not usually successful in the long run, as we can see what has happened since the War.

The second way… [is] compromise, we understand well, for it is the way we settle most of our controversies; each side gives up a little in order to have peace…or that the activity that has been interrupted by the conflict may go on. Compromise is the basis of trade union tactics….But I certainly ought not to imply that compromise is peculiarly a trade union method….

There is a way beginning now to be recognized: …when two desires are integrated, that means that a solution has been found in which both desires have found a place, that neither side has to sacrifice anything.”

Conflict 2.jpg

Follett gives several examples of how to find integrative solutions to problems. For example, she uses a personal problem she had one day at the library. Seated in the same room with a man who wanted the window open for fresh air, Follett objected because she didn’t want cold air blowing on her. The integrative solution? They opened a window in the adjacent room. The man got his fresh air while Follett didn’t get a draft.

So here are three examples for you to find integrative solutions:

Case #1: Mr. Tuna
You work in a typical cubicle farm. Your neighbour enjoys eating tuna fish sandwiches several days a week. You’ve mentioned on a few occasions that the smell is nauseating, but he’s not getting the message. What would be an integrative solution in this case?

Case #2: Ragtime Blues
You live in a condo high-rise. During the early evening, the person next door pounds out ragtime on her piano. She’s not breaking any bylaws or condo policy. What is the integrative solution?

Case #3: He Shoots, He Scores!
You like your neighborhood where you’ve lived for many years. But there’s a problem. Every fall, the kids set up their nets on your cul de sac and play ball hockey for the next five months. You love your BMW and fringe every time you hear the slap of a stick. What’s the integrative solution with these youngsters?

Be sure to post your solutions for others to see and comment on. And sure, include any humorous solutions. If we get enough, we’ll have a contest to vote for the best one.

There you have it, folks, a few illuminating bits from an amazing woman who was far ahead of her time. What’s unfortunate is that despite so much pain and suffering through the rest of the 20th Century after Follett’s death, and during the first two decades of the 21st Century, we don’t as a society seem to have learned much.

Conflict in the workplace and communities is worse, organized labor and management continue to grab for one another’s throat, and municipal politics is as nasty as ever.
When it comes to the practice of leadership, the heroic mindset still prevails: “Do as I say, not as I do!” Role modelling is in short supply. Exceptional leadership is, as the saying goes, scarce as hens teeth.

The most important thing in communication is hearing what isn’t said.
—Peter Drucker


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If I Empower You, You are Still Within my Power

September 24, 2017

Empowerment.png

I’ve been a long-time proponent of self-empowerment and have written about its role in effective leadership. It’s been something I struggled with myself during my career, having being locked into the subservient mindset and behaviour of which many of us have fallen.

Heroic Leadership–that those in positions of authority have all the answers and power–has unfortunately permeated society, and in some ways emasculated our collective ability to speak truth to power, whether it’s within organizations or how we assert our desires to elected politicians. Heroic Leadership is an anachronism in today’s society and economy, and will become a liability to organizations and governments as we proceed deeper into a very uncertain future.

We’ve become enraptured with charisma, misinterpreting it for leadership. We underestimate our own capacity for helping effect positive change within organizations, our communities and the world at large. One glimmer of hope is Generation Y (Millennials), which has been desperately trying to exert its mark in the labour market but which was creamed by the Great Recession of 2008-09 and dealing with its fallout since.

There is hope. The sun always rises.

Two authors and consultants who have influenced my thinking in the past are Harrison Owen and the late Angeles Arrien. Both base their work on Native American spiritual teachings. Arrien’s excellent book The Fourfold Way: Walking the Paths of the Warrior, Teacher, Healer and Visionary serves as a guide to how we can live in greater harmony with the Earth, how we can develop better relations with one another, and how we can improve our personal leadership. Her words have helped guide me for the past two decades: Be open to outcome, not attached to it. In a world of chaotic change and turmoil, these simple yet wise words serve us well.
Check out her work and especially this book.

Sit Lead 2

Harrison Owen is the creator of Open Space Technology and author of several superb leadership books. Take a few minutes to watch his video Leadership in a Self-Organizing World, in which he talks about the complexity of change, closed versus open systems, and the delusion of those in power believing they understand change and have the solutions. This is a very insightful presentation; be sure to watch it.

In his work in Open Space Technology and through his writings Owen talks about Four Immutable Laws of the Spirit, which help us to understand acceptance of an experience and then how to be creative with it. This approach contrasts with how we, as a society, prefer to resist change or force it in a certain direction:

1) Whoever is present are the right people,


2) Whenever it begins is the right time,


3) Whatever happens is the only thing that could have happened,


4) When it’s over, it’s over.

Reflect for a moment on this statement that Owen makes in his book The Spirit of Leadership: If I empower you, to some extent you are still within my power.

How often do we hear the Heroic Leadership refrain about “empowering employees.” In reality, no one can empower you; you can only empower yourself. The role of senior corporate leadership is to set the context, to create the environment where collaboration is fostered, creativity nurtured, mutual respect ingrained, vision created, leadership shared, and innovation valued.

Juxtaposed against self-empowerment, Heroic Leadership doesn’t stand a chance against the forces of positive change.

Reject Heroic Leadership; embrace self-empowerment!

It is better to know less than to know so much that it ain’t so.
—Josh Billings (pen name of Henry Wheeler Shaw, 19th Century American humorist)


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Smart Leaders Play the Long Game

September 17, 2017

 

 

Glass Globe

We live in the age of instant gratification. We want it now as consumers—hence the exponential growth of credit since the 1960s, whether in credit cards, conditional sales contracts, automotive loans or mortgages. And when it comes to business, the mindset of short-term financial results is foremost in the minds of CEOs, board chairmen (hardly any are women, incidentally) and shareholders. Consideration for the longer term, whether consumers or big-shot CEOs, is almost non-existent.

The sheep-like behaviour of consumers—coveting their neighbours’ or friends’ new acquisitions—is understandable to a degree. After all, we’re human beings who’ve been carefully and strategically groomed by corporations to desire more in our quest of perceived self-fulfillment and status. However, what’s somewhat bizarre and indeed irresponsible is when those people leading organizations engage in short-term thinking to attain some form of financial or ego-centric goal.

It doesn’t have to be the head of a company seeking financial results to please shareholders or credit rating agencies. It could be the leader of a not-for-profit organization who’s attempting to please her board of directors. Or it could be a deputy minister (equivalent to a secretary in the U.S. government) who is earning brownie points to downsize his department.

Your correspondent worked three decades for the Government of Canada, and during this time those in top leadership positions could earn bonus pay for cutting employees from the payroll. The problem was that as soon as a certain government (administration in U.S. terminology) achieved its downsizing cuts, the public service would then grow again. The losers from this game? Taxpayers and citizens.

Female Leader.png

Whether you’re the head of a private company (large or small) or a not-for-profit agency or a public sector department, your primary job is to look to the long-term: the horizon where nothing is certain, where obstacles and whitewater will challenge the organization along the way, and where you’ll need to be adaptable and to show resilience.

Someone who offers special insights into thinking strategically, and unfortunately who died too soon, is Stephen Covey (from a cycling accident in July 2012). Covey’s pithy messages from his numerous leadership books included one vitally important one: Begin with the end in mind (one of his 7 Habits of Highly Effective People).

Applying this lesson to a corporate setting means that those at the top must create a vision of the future that enrols all employees and that establishes a path with clear goals along the way. Where does your organization want to be in, say, five years? Or ten years?

Cost-cutting (people are the low-hanging fruit) is a tactical exercise that is sometimes necessary. However, it’s hardly a strategic approach to addressing competitive issues if you’re a for-profit company. If you’re part of a not-for-profit agency or government department, cost-cutting often serves to destroy morale and hasten the exit of talent.

The message here is to align short-term tactical decisions (the typical quarter-to-quarter business approach) with long-term strategy. Unfortunately, taking a long-term view is anathema to much of North American business. And hence the regular turbulence of sudden layoffs in companies as top executives strive to please shareholders and boards of directors.

Those who play the long game and make the effort to invest in building their organization’s resilience and adaptability to constant change are the strategic leaders of the 21st Century. Reactive 20th Century management approaches need to be deposited where they belong: in the dustbin of history.

Someone is sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago.
— Warren Buffett


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Meet FDR’s Backbone: Frances Perkins–An Extraordinary Woman Leader

September 10, 2017

PerkinsFranklin Delano Roosevelt rates as being one of America’s greatest presidents, probably in the top three. Yet he was despised by many during his ascendancy to president and during his four term tenure. And he is still reviled by right-wing conservatives and some Republicans.

FDR, of whom your corespondent is a great admirer, was an exceedingly complicated man. He most certainly had his warts, weaknesses and biases. However, he was also a visionary who understood what America needed to do during the Great Depression and as World War Two proceeded initially in the absence of the involvement of the United States.

Furthermore, FDR was probably the most effective president at initiating and sustaining action. He launched the Civilian Conservation Core, instituted the New Deal, and deftly handled a demanding Winston Churchill during the War. He also launched a massive infrastructure program during the Great Depression, the results of which are still critical to the country’s economy.

This all sounds great. And it is. But there’s one important omission: FDR didn’t accomplish his achievements alone. One person who served under him, and who was in effect his backbone in many ways, was a woman. Her name was Frances Perkins (April 10, 1880 – May 14, 1965).

As early as 1930 when Roosevelt was the Governor of New York, Perkins relentlessly prodded him to support social insurance. When he took office as president in 1933, Roosevelt stalled in proceeding with social insurance because he believed that the country was not yet ready for such change. During his first Hundred Days (a concept borrowed from Napoleon), FDR argued that Perkins, as Labor Secretary, should commence an education campaign on the subject to begin laying the foundation within government and the American public. In addition, he wanted a panel of experts to study what would be involved in introducing social insurance.

Perkins accepted this approach and began a focused effort during which she raised the subject over two dozen times in Cabinet meetings during 1933, and delivered 100 speeches across America in which she touted the benefits of social insurance.

Perkins and FDR

As the months proceeded through 1934 and as FDR continued to show ambivalent behaviour towards introducing social insurance, Perkins took drastic action in December of that year. At a Cabinet meeting at her home, during which the discussion became heated over whether social insurance should be run by the federal or state governments, she locked the doors to her house and disconnected the phone, stating that no one was going to leave until an agreement was reached. At 2 am a tentative agreement was finalized.

Of course, there were still many rough patches in the months afterwards. For example, it’s amazing that one of the issues that concerned Cabinet in 1935 was that an aging population would eventually contribute to a deficit in social insurance by 1980. Yes, that’s 1980, 45 years later! How often do we see politicians looking that far ahead nowadays?

Perkins was a pit bull when it came to grabbing onto an issue she believed was critical for America and then driving it forward. Hers is a fascinating story of how one woman was the impetus for a program that has served tens of millions of Americans, serving as an automatic economic stabilizer, as well as mitigating the effects of poverty among the elderly. Incidentally, it wasn’t until January 1940 that the first individual received a Social Security check, in the amount of $22.54, a Miss Ida Fuller of rural Vermont.
Frances Perkins may not be well known as an incredible leader, but she is in the ranks of other contemporaries, such as Eleanor Roosevelt and Mary Parker-Follett, seen as the Mother of Modern Management. We have a lot for which to thank Frances Perkins.

Leadership is not defined by the exercise of power but by the capacity to increase the sense of power among those led. The most essential work of the leader is to create more leaders.
—Mary Parker Follett


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The Best Manager, EVER! Tales from the Management Crypt

September 3, 2017

Management

We’ve all had good bosses, and more likely bad bosses that outnumber the former. This post is a more provocative commentary on leadership; however, it has important lessons for those people wanting to become effective, well-rounded leaders.

Your contribution is therefore important. Share your experiences of managers you’ve had: the good, the bad and the ugly. And if anyone’s brave enough, share where you’ve messed up as a manager but how you learned from the experience. And yes, yours truly made his share of mistakes as a new manager – so the kimono’s open. My sins?

When I was in my early thirties, 30 years ago, I was appointed to a management position in the area where I had worked for eight years. Yes, I knew the work technically. However, leadership, as opposed to management, is not an appointment; it is earned. Due to my own insecurities and wanting to do a good job as a manager – especially in the absence of any formal management training – I was a micro-manager.

When I’ve given presentations in the past on leadership I share this experience. And when I ask the audience how many people like working for a micro-manager, surprisingly no one has yet to raise their hand. Hmmmm. So that tells you something.

A few of my team mates who were younger didn’t like my style of management and figuratively slapped me on the head. I still thank them to this day, because many micro-managers – and there are lots out there – never “get it.” The result is high staff turnover, weak productivity, and the absence of creativity and innovation.

Fortunately, I got the message really fast back then. I worked 35 years before retiring and always despised micro-management. However, once I got over it when I was about 33 I became a delegator and, as I evolved as a manager, someone who believed in sharing the leadership. That is my personal leadership philosophy, and which was the subject of my masters thesis on leadership in the late nineties.

Micro Manager
So let’s shift gears and turn to one of my heroes: Henry Mintzberg, a professor of management at McGill University in Montreal, Canada. If there’s one leadership book you should buy, make it Mintzberg’s book entitled Managing. It’s brilliant and builds on his empirical work over 35 years. He’s one of the few really grounded authors on management. Too much of the literature over the past three decades, unfortunately, has consisted of excessively fluffy, feel-good stuff. Mintzberg, who may be perceived as a bit of a curmudgeon, is a provocative thinker and writer.

One story he recounts in a footnote in his book is that of a British CEO who refused to allow employees to walk past his office door. The result was that they had to take a set of stairs to another floor. When employees met with this CEO in his office they had to sit on a chair that was at a lower level; that way the CEO could look down upon them.

Unfortunately, and unbelievably, this guy not only got promoted but received a knighthood from the Queen! Upon his departure from the company, his advice to his successor was: a) dress properly, b) don’t smoke and c) maintain control.

The end of the story? The CEO’s successor went into his first board meeting, took off his jacket, lit a cigar and asked: “What would you like to talk about?”

Now that’s my kind of leader (minus the cigar). This new CEO was about to demolish that company’s corporate culture and build a new one.

So now it’s your turn. Share your experiences.

Companies are communities. There’s a spirit of working together. Communities are not a place where a few people allow themselves to be singled out as solely responsible for success.
— Henry Mintzberg


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Are You an Authentic Leader?

August 27, 2017

MandelaI am your servant. I do not come to you as a leader, as one above others.

When you read these words did the person who uttered them come to mind? Admittedly, the world is adrift in leadership quotations. But what makes these words special is that they were said by Nelson Mandela, a man who truly suffered during the years he was incarcerated in a South African prison. Mandela was South Africa’s first black president, serving from 1994 to 1999. (He died on December 5, 2013)

What I want to talk about in this post is leadership and to pose this question, which each of us needs to answer: “Am I an authentic leader?”

We’ve heard statements that leaders are born. But then others argue that leaders can be developed. Well, how about going back in time to hear from Aristotle:

“From the moment of their birth, some are marked for subjugation, and others for command.”

Well, that may not be all that helpful, especially when the general consensus now is that leaders can be developed.

One way to look at the issue is this way: I’ve organized the debate over who possesses leadership into two types of leadership: Big L and Little L. My personal view is that only a few of us will ever have the dynamic leadership behaviours and skills to lead organizations, private, public or non-profit, large or small, or the populace of a country, state or province. Only a few of us have what it takes to be a Big L leader.

GhandiWhat propelled people like Winston Churchill, Mohandas Gandhi, Golda Meir, Margaret Thatcher and Nelson Mandela to be world-class leaders? For those who are sports-minded, consider the great athletes like Bobby Orr, Billy Jean King, Wayne Gretsky or Mohammed Ali. Or how about such vocalists as Aretha Franklin, Céline Dionne or Beverly Sills?

These individuals possess an innate talent and drive that propels them to succeed. Why do some children at a very young age show an incredible skill in a certain discipline, yet other children work hard but only attain a certain level of proficiency?

To lead an organization, especially in today’s turbulent world, requires someone with unique abilities. Some of these can be learned. But there needs to be an inner drive and vision that causes that individual to want to lead others. This raises the issue of power and status, for which many people strive in their efforts to rise to the top.

So what about power?

First off, power can be an important component of effective leadership, provided it is used properly and for the right purposes. When top leaders abuse power by controlling and manipulating their subordinates, then these are not Big L leaders. They may be good managers, but when it comes to inspiring people and leading with integrity, they fall short of achieving this.

Reflect on the following quote by the late Peter Drucker, who called things as he saw them. He believed that leadership must be founded upon a constitution; otherwise, irresponsibility will result:



”I am amazed that today’s prominent writers on leadership do not seem to realize that the three most charismatic leaders in all recorded history were named Hitler, Stalin and Mao. I do not believe that there are three men who did more evil and more harm. Leadership has to be grounded in responsibility. It has to be grounded in a constitution. It has to be grounded in accountability. Otherwise, it will lead to tyranny.”

Drucker was an advocate for shared leadership. He believed in employee responsibility and the need for a “self-governing community,” where individuals and teams share in many managerial activities. And this brings me to the concept of Little L leadership.

What is Little L leadership?

ThatcherThis is the leadership we see displayed throughout organizations and community — the day-to-day acts that people at all levels engage in. However, there are those who aren’t interested in taking on leadership roles. That’s okay. Some of them will gradually come on board, while others will continue to want to be led by their peers and managers.
This is a key point to remember when reflecting on our personal leadership styles and potentials.

It comes down to each of us being authentic in how we conduct ourselves. We need to strip off the facades we wear and own up to our weaknesses, limitations, and warts. When we’re honest and open with ourselves and others, we gain greater confidence and self-respect, plus respect from others. Be true to yourself and others will be true to you.

Here’s a personal example.

When I was in my early 30s I was promoted to manager of a team of economists. I had zero management training. Because of my own insecurities and wanting to do a good job, I became a bit of a micro manager. That was until a couple of the young economists straightened me out. It took a while but I learned to eventually let go and share the leadership with my team.

I was still the manager, but my team took a lot of initiative and consistently demonstrated leadership in their own ways. There’s no magic formula or cookie cutter approach to this. Each of us has to find our own way. In my case I had to fall on my nose a number of times.

Here are three questions you may wish to reflect on when it comes to developing your leadership skills:

1. What are my strengths and weaknesses? (Be honest with yourself)


2. What do I need to do to be more adventurous and risk-taking?


3. How can I inspire others to want to work towards a common purpose?

Here’s one piece of advice learned from personal experience: If you want to inspire others (an essential part of leadership), you need to be passionate about your cause.

Here’s a great story.

I recall watching a PBS program a few years ago that looked at the head surgeon of an emergency room in a large US city. As you can imagine, an ER can be an extremely hectic and stressful place in which to work. People have to know their duties and understand the interdependency of their efforts.

What struck me most about watching the surgeon was his calmness in dealing with highly stressful situations in the midst of chaos. Multiple victims of car accidents and victims with gunshot wounds. As he stated to the journalist: “My staff look at me to keep it together. If I lose it, they lose it.” When his shift finished, where did go? Home? No, he went to do volunteer work with inner city Black children. For me, this guy showed exemplary leadership!

MeirBut I ask you, was this man born as a natural leader, or did he develop over time?

Each of us needs to see our personal quest for leadership as one that first starts with the discovery of who each of us really is. We need:

To know ourselves,
To hear ourselves,
To tell the truth to ourselves,
To be honest with ourselves.

Once we address these questions and reexamine our values and beliefs, we’ll be ready to move forward in our leadership journey. Sure, leadership skills can be learned. But the first step is a process in which we look inside ourselves.

 

This journey is a very personal and private one. We may or may not to wish to share with others along the way. However, one thing needs to be clear and that is every leader must go though it.

Authors Kouzes and Posner (The Leadership Challenge) state:

“You can’t elevate others to higher purposes until you’ve first elevated yourself….You can’t lead others until you’ve first led yourself through a struggle with opposing values….A leader with integrity has one self, at home and at work, with family and with colleagues. Such a leader has a unifying set of values that guide choices of action regardless of the situation.”

Finally…

Here are four excellent questions they pose to help facilitate the leadership journey:

• What are my values and beliefs on how people should operate in the organization?


• How strongly am I attached to my values and beliefs?


• How strong is my relationship with those I lead and with whom I work?


• Am I the right one to be leading at the moment?



The last question is especially important in my opinion. It gets at the heart of the shared leadership issue. Regardless of one’s “position” in the organization, there are times when one steps forward to lead and times when one steps back. As Kouzes and Posner state:

“To step out into the unknown, begin with the exploration of the inner territory. With that as a base, we can then discover and unleash the leader within us all.”


holisti-leadershipClick here to download a complimentary copy of Jim’s e-book Becoming a Holistic Leader, 3rd Edition.


Jim BeachVisit Jim’s e-Books, Resources and Services pages.

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The Pornography of Donald Trump’s Presidency: When Maturity and Ethics Matter

August 20, 2017

Trump

We live in an increasingly digitized world of information, characterized in part by non-stop news. Main stream media (print, radio and television) is being rapidly pushed aside by new sources, some of which provide refreshing perspectives on geo-political and societal events, while others (which will remain nameless) peddle in belligerent, contrived “news.” Okay, here’s one faux news outlet: Breitbart. But there are plenty more of even more vitriolic alternative news sites.

By now, even the most arrogant, know-it-all journalist should willingly concede that he was totally clueless in predicting what a Trump presidency would likely resemble. That includes both right and left wing reporters. Some would incorrectly argue that Donald Trump is his own man, that he’s an independent thinker who does things differently based on his alleged business acumen.

In reality he’s simply a narcissist who, emotionally scarred by his upbringing, developed into an egomaniac in which his ego eventually exceeded his intelligence and his ability to look beyond his personal needs and wants. His petulance and strong propensity to exclude or punish people—including those he has pandered to through gushing statements—who have pissed him off has left a growing stream of entrails at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. The only people who are perhaps immune from getting thrown overboard once disemboweled are daughter Ivan, hubby Jared and wife Melania. Time will tell.

Charlottesville.jpg

Each week brings a new Trump fiasco, with the further debasing of the Office of the President. It’s as if he contemplates what further misery and embarrassment he can inflict upon the White House, Congress, and the American people. The appalling riot in Charlottesville, Virginia, last weekend was not just a no-brainer but indeed a communications gift to Trump when it came to condemning the actions of White Supremacists, Neo-Nazis and other repulsive losers who arrived to cause trouble.

Yet Trump just couldn’t keep his mouth shut and stay on script. The visual reactions of his senior aides and secretaries (notably new Chief of Staff General John Kelly) and later reports of the grief expressed by White House staff were a testimony of an out-of-control president with zero emotional intelligence, little grasp of history (pertaining to the Civil War), and a desire to pander to a portion of his voting block.

Never in its 241 year history has the United States had such a mentally unbalanced president. And in a modern context with the proliferation of nuclear weapons, especially among unstable lesser developed countries (eg, Pakistan and North Korea), the stakes are huge. Imagine for a moment Donald Trump being president during the Cuban Missile Crisis. President John F. Kennedy, new in his role, capably handled the crisis, being resolute in his dealings with the Soviet Union’s Nikita Khrushchev yet understandings the acute sensitivities of the negotiations. No where did you hear threats of “fire and fury” being uttered by President Kennedy.
Mueller.jpg
It’s too early to predict what will happen to the disintegrating Trump presidency. Donald Trump may appear to have nine lives; however, eventually he’ll run out of luck. Former FBI director Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russia’s interference in the 2016 presidential election, while staffed with a roster of highly competent law enforcement investigators and lawyers, could get derailed by Trump. And if Mueller’s allowed to conclude his work, the past few months have shown that what may seem logical and reasonable only dissolves somehow with Trump’s toxic touch.

Americans are crying out for a mature national leader who practices inclusiveness, exhibits ethical behaviour, and enrols the country’s 340 million citizens in creating a better future. This is the task—call it Job 1—facing the individual elected to national office. Trump porn has NO place in the United States of America, replete with his background of misogyny, racism and bigotry.

The person who has come out swinging at Donald Trump and who has given an eloquent, yet forceful, scolding is former California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger . This short video is well worth watching.

Rank does not confer privilege or give power. It imposes responsibility.
– Peter Drucker


holisti-leadershipClick here to download a complimentary copy of Jim’s e-book Becoming a Holistic Leader, 3rd Edition.


Jim BeachVisit Jim’s e-Books, Resources and Services pages.

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