Listening to CNN today, I was intrigued by this given my recent look at the typical qualities of a change agent. To refresh, they included: having a clear vision, being patient yet persistent, promoting critical thinking, engaging in respectful relationships, being self confident, and being a good role model. It just doesn’t seem to me that Mr. Trump has demonstrated the full skill-set to be an effective agent of change.
If we want to make change happen, the ‘agent’ must present and interact with those you want to change in a manner that makes them want to engage. Has he demonstrated that ability? He has been known to be arrogant, demeaning, and dishonest in his past business dealings and has validated this by continuing the behaviour during the campaign towards Clinton, immigrants and minorities only to mention 3.
In one debate he spoke to his leadership skills and commented that when he asked someone to do something there was no question, they would do it…now. Does this demonstrate patience?
While his confidence and business success are undisputable, he likes to be in control and making the decisions on his terms. Does this demonstrate inclusion of others and/or the promotion of critical thinking?
In terms of relationships his actions have shown an inability to consistently behave in a manner that is respectful, approachable or reliable. Does this demonstrate effective interpersonal skills or offer a positive role model?
So, does Mr. Trump have the skills to effectively guide change? The choice is yours but clearly, his understanding of ‘Know thy impact’ (Hattie, 2009) is quite different than what I believe Hattie has recommended for educators.
Hattie, J. A. (2009). Visible Learning: A Synthesis of Over 800 Meta-Analysis Relating to Achievement. Oxford, UK: Rutledge.