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Tuesday, 31 January 2017

The 45th President of Executive Orders

More than a decade ago, I got a glimpse inside the mind of a colleague. He told me that the first thing he did in a new role was to scare everyone around him about him. Firing at least one employee on his first day, or within his first week, was his habit. Donald Trump's actions remind me of him. Clearly, he wants to set the tone right away.

Fear management is a management tool used by a certain group of CEO's. "Fear will get some results because it sets boundaries and consequences," says Dr Manfred Kets de Vries, Distinguished Clinical Professor of Leadership Development and Organizational Change at INSEAD in France. "But most people who manage by fear eventually fall because no one is able to tell them anything. They live in a fantasy world." (Forbes)

I recognise that statement. Back then, people even asked me to tell their bad news to my colleague. I do recall that I did feel fear for bosses in my initial jobs. The solution is to see them as human beings with flaws like everyone else. Some bosses may want to behave like demigods but they also go the toilet when they need to. That very thought humanizes them sufficiently.

Donald Trump's fear management may also be a technique to distract people from other - more important - issues. By focusing the attention on him, other people in his Cabinet or family can get certain things done without too much attention. Some, but certainly not many, news articles are also focusing on Donald Trump's distraction techniques: GuardianMother JonesTelegraph.

In line with my earlier expectations, Trump is running his new position as if he were the CEO and majority owner of a private (family) company. Excerpt from my 20 January 2017 blog: "Accountability and Responsibility are very different in private (family) vs public situations (eg, my blog 1, blog 2, blog 3). I doubt that Trump will feel accountable as President and expect that will become his Achilles' heel."

Accountability is an almost insurmountable task for an extreme narcissist like Trump who is in deep denial and uses reverse psychology and projection to cope with daily life. Blaming others is his usual solution when his actions and words are being criticized. The more pressure, the more ferocious is the counter attack.

In order to step up his own controversies, it's now increasingly likely that Donald Trump will indeed appoint a Special Prosecutor responsible for "investigating" and "locking up" Hillary Clinton. By continuing stirring up such controversies, others are free to pursue Trump's genuine (eg, business) interests, without ample media coverage.

Threatening political opponents will, however, finally raise the alarm bells at his opponents within the Republican GOP, and is likely to lead to Trump's Waterloo.

"The chaos, failure and embarrassment of Donald J. Trump's first week in office are only surprising if you are unfamiliar with his business career." Andy Borowitz in a FB posting.

Waterloo (1974) by ABBA - artists, lyrics, video, Wiki-1, Wiki-2

My, my, at Waterloo, Napoleon did surrender
Oh yeah, and I have met my destiny in quite a similar way
The history book on the shelf
Is always repeating itself