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Saturday, March 04, 2017

An Analysis of Trump

Now that Trump has become a jaded subject, at least, in the world community, I think an analysis can be made of his style and life thus far. I write this as a person who has worked in industry, under people who have been a disastrously second-generation of business owners, also called second-generation entrepreneur (SGE).

As we all know Trump is a SGE, who has not had the experience of being out there, in the vanguard, fighting for his business. On the contrary, he has had everything handed down to him, without much difficulty, inherited from a rich father. He became complacent as a result and looked down upon people who worked for a living, to make ends meet.

I had seen him in the reality show The Apprentice a few times. I must say the similarity to some SGEs I worked with was stark. I said, “Oh, the similarity with my boss is obvious.” This is the boss who in a few years liquidated the business his father had assiduously built up. He is charismatic, lovable, jokes a lot, laughs but when you are close to him his flaws are like elephants in the room: he is disdainful of his own staff and ridicule and insults them liberally. Therefore he doesn’t get quality people to work with him, with the result that he has to, or, is compelled to do everything himself. Talented people would come to work for him and would leave in a few weeks, if not days. He is risk averse and quality people need to take risks to achieve their goals. Thus Trump doesn’t trust anyone to draft his executive orders; he has to do them himself, and signs them with a flourish, seemingly having achieved a lot. See the way he has been shown signing decrees with his vice-president and cabinet members in attendance. He is holding court like a SGE.

SGEs are people who have no achievement to their name but are applauded everywhere, conferred awards, felicitated, and lionised. Everywhere they go they receive a red carpet with the result they believe they are stars and that they were born to this sort of lifestyle.

SGEs also ignore some of the basic facts that make up the lives of people who slog for them from nine to five. People who have worked in low-paying jobs and have been promoted know how hard it is to rise in the organisation and how they have to carry their people with them. The second generation, such as Trump, do not see this need. They think hiring and firing will do the trick and, as an example, see how national security adviser Michael Flynn was unceremoniously sacked.
Since SGEs survive through the fear psychosis they create, they neither hear people out, nor do they value their advice. They only trust their own decisions and the opinions of the “yes” men who surround them. Watch any video of Trump and you will see how tense people are around him. They are almost afraid of what he will say next. When he speaks you can see even his closest aides flinch.
There are no black and whites in governance and management. Everything is coloured by greys. The best men for the job often carries his people with him and encourages them to come up with good decisions based on their experience and knowledge. There aren’t many people in Trump’s team who can do this.

That’s why the credibility of the Trump administration is sorely lacking and there’s the constant fight with the press. The press is an integral part of US governance and if they are ignored, vilified, and humiliated (as Trumps refusal to attend White House Correspondents’ dinner shows) then the powerful press lobby will take an adversarial stand. Unlike in India journalists in the US can’t be bought, or, mollycoddled. The press is indeed powerful in the US they have the knowledge, background, and history to support their independence and impartiality.

This could prove to be a decider in the realpolitik of that great country.

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