Inside Insight Into Donald Trump’s Leadership Style When it Comes to “The People Stuff”

What follows is a work of fiction/parody/satire. Except for the parts explicitly labeled as being true, I made it all up.  OK?  Is that clear?  I bring this to your attention for several reasons.  First, I don’t want to mislead you.  Second, I don’t want to add any more fuel to the fires of an already incendiary Presidential campaign season.  But mostly it’s because I don’t want to run afoul of the litigious nature of the current Republican front-runner—although if he were to hit me with a lawsuit, I’m sure it would be prepared by great lawyers and be a terrific, world-class lawsuit.  Now that we've gotten the legal inoculation out of the way, on to today's post. 



In response to demands that she release transcripts of the big-bucks speeches she has made to investment bankers, insurance companies, and the military/pantsuit complex, Hillary Clinton has said that she would do so if and when other Presidential candidates did the same.

Surprisingly, the first candidate to take Clinton up on this challenge was Donald Trump, who has just released the transcript of the keynote speech he delivered at a recent meeting of the ABC—the Awesome Billionaires Club—accompanied by this Tweet:  “Am releasing this even tho I dont like 2 B submissive 2 least not usually if you get my drift...heh heh heh.”

Another surprise was the theme of Trump’s ABC keynote.  “The politicians say that I’ve been running a ‘non-traditional’ campaign,” he began, “so rather than disappoint those losers, I’ll make this a non-traditional talk, too.  I’m not gonna talk about the usual things I talk about when it comes to running a fabulous, world-class business...things like market share and profitability and ROI and market capitalization—although if I did it would make all of those South American drug lords green—my favorite color—with envy.  You know the guys I’m talking about—the ones who are flooding our southern borders every day with hundreds of drug mules several of whom may not also be rapists.  Instead, I’m gonna talk about, you know, the people stuff.”

The title of Trump’s presentation was “You Aren’t Leading If Nobody’s Following: The People-Side of Running A Remarkably Fabulous, World-Class Business That Employs Tens of Thousands of Them,” and it touched on several of the current hot topics in the field of human resource management.


The first such topic he covered was equality of opportunity.  “I think it’s wrong to treat people differently just because of, say, the family they might have come from, or their social station, or whether or not they might have inherited $200 million from their old man,” Trump said.  “You’ve got to give everyone a chance.  That’s the way I’ve lived my life, it’s the way I’ve run my business—which, by the way, is superbly fabulous and world-class—and that’s the unbelievably fabulous, world-class attitude that I’ll bring to the White House.”

A bit of Googling reveals that The Donald does indeed walk the talk. 

[The following paragraph is actually true.]  There is this from a September 2015 issue of “Rolling Stone” when the topic under discussion had turned to his daughter, Ivanka: Yeah, she’s really something, and what a beauty, that one. If I weren’t happily married and, ya know, her father . . . ” 

And then there are these touching observations [also true] made during an NBC “Dateline” interview with Stone Phillips about his potential relationship with Princess Diana shortly after her tragic death:

“I would have loved to have had a shot to date her,” said Trump.

“Do you think you would have had a shot?” asked Phillips.

“I think so, yeah,” The Donald responded. “I always have a shot.”


“Every Monday morning we have a New Employee Orientation session for all of that week’s hires who have joined the other tens of thousands of terrific people I employ in my spectacularly fabulous, world-class company,” Trump told the ABC audience.  “If I’m in town, I meet with them in person.  If I’m away, I talk to them via video conference.  But I always make time to do this, because I’m a people person.”

He went on to describe the gist of the message he delivers during these orientation sessions.  “I tell them that they wouldn’t have been hired if we didn’t value the depth and breadth of the capabilities that they bring and the life-experiences that they’ve had...that we want to hear their ideas and their opinions, however different or unconventional they may be.”

He then added an important caveat.  “Let me make one thing clear, though.  Yes, you need to be open to diverse ideas and opinions yadda yadda yadda, but there also has to be some business rigor to all of this people stuff.  So I’ve had my analysts and actuaries—and they’re outrageously fabulous, world-class analysts and actuaries—develop an algorithm and a mathematical constant that we require everyone to use in the decision-making process.  We call it ‘The K Factor,’ and it corrects any errors or misjudgments they might have made when making those decisions.”

A PowerPoint slide depicted this simple formula:

           When faced with a decision...

                        THE CORRECT ANSWER = K × YOUR ANSWER



“I know this might look simplistic,” he added, “but believe me, it works.  It’s what’s helped me build my business, which, by the way, is phenomenally fabulous and world-class.”


Trump then told his audience that he had “saved the best for last, since I’m now gonna say a few words about the most important part of the people stuff—employee engagement.  Wait, what’s that?”

[The notes accompanying the transcript indicate that he then pointed to the podium at which he was standing.]

“I’m getting some flashing red lights here,” he said.  “Apparently they’re telling me that my time is up.  Yeah right.  Like I could care less about these lights. I didn’t take this sort of thing from Megyn Kelly of Fox—and I do mean ‘fox,' if you get my drift, heh heh heh—you think I’m gonna take it here?”

“I’ve already told you how I always make time to meet with new hires every Monday morning, and if that’s not employee engagement I don’t know what is.  But beyond that, whenever we’re dealing with an important matter about which there is disagreement, I take the same approach.  We engage.  We get everyone in a room, and we talk and we discuss and we negotiate—always remembering The K-Factor—until we have a deal.  That’s how I do it on the job, and that’s how I’ll do it with ISIS and Harry Reid and the Pope and the next little old lady whose disgusting, ramshackle property stands between me and my ability to build something else that is mind-blowingly fabulous and world-class and—Hey!  I’m among friends here, right?—vulgar as all hell!"

“So that’s what I have to say to you this morning,” he concluded.  “But before I go, I’d like to call your attention to the fact that during this talk I’ve been practicing what I’ve been preaching.  I’ve given you all equal opportunity to consider the value of my recommendations.  I respect the fact that in this audience is a broadly diverse collection of technical expertise and life experience.  And I’ve engaged directly with you to share my thoughts and opinions based on my life’s experience.

“You can take ‘em or leave ‘em.  But I wouldn’t be me if I didn’t tell it like it is.  So if you decide to leave ‘em, then—hey—I guess you’re a loser.”

According to the transcript notes, Trump then gave a perfunctory nod and turned to walk off the stage to a standing ovation.  The event chairperson approached Trump from stage-left with his right arm extended, at which point Trump held up both of his hands at shoulder level, palms facing the chairperson, and shook his head no, since, as is well known, Donald Trump does not like to shake people’s hands. 

After all, there are some things that just shouldn’t be expected of even the people-est of people people.