The group I was in the other day was asked by the facilitator “are you for or against Trump?”. Yes, I replied, I don’t think you can be benign about him. Some people feel angry, not just in America, but everywhere.
Anger creates reactions and high interest when we see it. It has a place when our ethics are seriously undermined, or behaviour around us deliberately sets to undermine us or our organisation. It can create fear and further anger if not contained. But anger is not rage which is uncontrolled, scary and shouldn’t be in our toolkit.
What to make of Trump I often think. He seems like he’s in an uncontrolled rage much of the time, although we don’t see it directly expressed, other than in the middle-of-the-night texts. The administration he leads seems fueled by rage – rage at minorities and those that support them, at political opponents, at other countries, the FBI and Special Counsel – and so on.
You could argue that he’s standing up for what he believes in. Despite that proposition being very difficult to determine (I originally wrote laughable here!), it’s not authentic leadership by any stretch. Authentic Leadership requires empathy, a strong ethical compass, firmness when needed, and nurturing those that need support. Not abandonment and undermining.
That’s my rage about leadership!
One thought on “A rage about leadership”
Well said Stephen;
Donald Trump I suggest is a living example of an “ens causa sui” the exact opposite of authenticity. The Don has achieved object status in that it would seem he lives in each moment as pure object. Authenticity itself is a goal or project which one strives for, thus to live each moment as pure subject. Most of us live along the line between pure object and pure subject to varying degrees.
Robert Kegan author of ‘Immunity to Change’ and ‘In Over our Heads’ is interesting reading related to this.
David Boje of Organisational Story Telling and more recently The Quantum Physics of Storytelling is also very relevant.
Keep up the thinking