[October 28, 2020] In this article, I compare the leadership qualities of Joe Biden and Donald Trump; both running for the U.S. presidency. Alas, hype defines this election, mostly driven by a media accused of both political partisanship and prejudicial censorship. Any leadership comparison is a difficult task, one that data mining, analysis, and the application of seasoned judgment.
To make a clean and fair assessment of these two men is possible. A reading of their websites, analysis of their speeches, and their campaign strategies over the past one year can give us a glimpse into their leadership today.
A few comments before the analysis:
First, a note about my biases. I readily admit my bias against the destructive and insidiousness of socialism as an ideology. I also am a patriot and am unapologetic about it. And, lastly I support our police and other first responders and do so without reservation. I also believe that our federalist system and the U.S. Constitution is the best and deficiencies can be addressed within its current design. I believe our American values define us.
Second, I have done my research with care. The qualities of leadership I use here, follow leader themes taken from articles in my senior leadership blog written over the past seven years. Please refer to both the articles in the blog, my recommended readings (which I have carefully read), and other outside material written on leadership. After several decades in leadership roles, I know a bit about what it takes to be a successful senior leader and what follows is not just about leadership but about senior leadership.
Third, there is little here about specifics of the Presidency in terms of political policy or strategy. For example, there is no judgment on foreign policy, environmental regulations, immigration, oil and gas exploration, etc. This analysis focuses on leadership qualities.
|1||Experienced Judgment||47 years in politics. Defined by leftist political positions.||50 years in business & 3.5 years in politics. Defined by conservative values.|
|2||Being Present & Visible||Puts a “lid” on appearances. Often stays at his home without public comment.||Highly visible, conducts many interviews, willing to talk with a hostile press.|
|3||Clear Vision||“We’re about to go into a dark winter.”||“Make America Great Again.”|
|4||Drives a Positive Culture||“America is a racist country.”||“I love the American people.”|
|5||Accountability||Changes positions when viewing his record.||Says US citizens will hold him accountable.|
|6||Decisiveness||Slow to make a decision. Uses committees or commissions.||Makes big decisions quickly.|
|7||Intellectual Competence||Smart but has cognitive impairment. Difficulty articulating thoughts.||Smart and articulate.|
|8||Inspirational||Sees a dark future and drives a “hunker down” approach to life.||Wants to open society and reject fear.|
|9||Gets Results||No one can name a significant accomplishment in his tenure.||Middle East peace, no more wars, tax reductions, growing economy.|
|10||Honesty & Integrity||Caught in numerous lies about his education and family background.||Unfaithful to his wife many years ago.|
|11||Adopts American Values||Rejects values like hard work, religion, staying out of trouble with the law, etc.||Fully embraces American values and speaks about them often.|
|12||Dealing with Unknowns||Deals with unknowns by studying the unknown with the “experts.”||Willing to make decisions without all the information.|
|13||Humility||Says he is the best at everything and exaggerates.||Says he is the best to be President and exaggerates.|
|14||Mental Toughness||Forgets when under pressure and avoids unscripted events.||Can be nasty when pressed but doesn’t avoid critical situations or events.|
|15||Has Big Ideas||Yes||Yes|
|16||Zealous Commitment||Only partly committed to running for president.||Highly committed.|
|18||Great Communicator||No, too much time avoiding the press and other means of communication.||Yes, esp. in his use of Twitter. Criticism that he may communicate too much.|
|19||Builds Trust & Confidence||Difficult to judge this because he does not communicate his positions well.||Yes, but only in a narrow group of dedicated fans. Abrasiveness is a problem.|
|20||Spinoffs||Media gives full support.
Hollywood celebrities are on board.
|Spontaneous Trump rallies unrelated to Trump campaign|