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Behavioral Insights Decode Trump Family Values

Not since 1961 has there been such a glamorous, tight-knit celebrity First Family in the Whitehouse as the Trump family. Headed up by President Donald Trump this family is well used to public scrutiny and having the spotlight turned on their every waking move.

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It would foolish to believe that this noisy, fun loving, dynasty wouldn’t have robust dinner table discussions – even more so now that the head of the house is the President of the United States. But what about the apparently reticent Flotus, that is, Melania Trump? What could be her behavioral and communication style? Well – dumb she is not – she speaks five languages which could certainly be useful at state dinners. Her background is ordinary – raised in Yugoslavia not as part of high society in a Trump-like tower, but in a concrete apartment block tower. Married to the most influential leader in the free world, Melania Trump would need to be a special kind of woman to manage or influence her President husband and this blended family. Trumps Personality (Influencer DNA Behavioral Style) is well balanced by that of his wife’s personality (Facilitator DNA Behavioral Style). Melania Trump will be the glue to this high-powered, influential family. The Trump family, through understanding their Natural Behavior and Personality, has obtained insights into how to navigate human differences and communication styles to build a cohesive family existence. They get each other. They understand where and when to modify their behavior in certain situations based on experiences, education, and values. Work-Life balance is important to this family. President Trump uses a family residence rather than Camp David to relax. He refers to Mar-a-Lago as his Southern White House. A further example of work-life balance is their decision for the First Lady to remain in New York until the end of their young son Barons school year. They clearly believe in the age old adage a family that plays together, stays together. Summary of the Family Strengths and Struggles:

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The Trumps are no different to other blended families. They will have heated and robust discussions. This is typical family dynamics and isn’t just because they are the Trumps/First family. Not everyone in families is around the Thanksgiving table. There will always be black sheep or disenfranchised member – it’s called family. It is not unreasonable to assume there are personality challenges. There will always be blind spots in families. How we see each other depends very much on how we see ourselves. As parents, even in powerful, yet blended families such as the Trumps, we have different perspectives of our children because that is all that we can see or not see. The goal is to get more clarity. Understanding how each member communicates and how they wish to be communicated with can be a significant first step to delivering not just harmony, but where a family also works together, significant business success. With reliability factor of 91% and having been completed by millions of people – taking the DNA Behavior journey helps families to manage the information gap. Many families fail because they don’t understand how to live harmoniously when there are different personalities and communication styles to be navigated.

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To learn more, please speak with one of our DNA Behavior Specialists (LiveChat), email inquiries@dnabehavior.com, or visit DNA Behavior.

Management Principle: Thinking and Staff Development

In today’s world we’re not really encouraged to think, and by that I mean to wrestle long and hard over issues that involve different mindsets, considering tradeoffs, and then arriving at specific well thought out conclusions. Rather, we are asked to adopt and accept certain belief systems and simply conform. Since Pavlov’s famous experiment with man’s best friend, humanity has become the target of social conditioning, where like food shopping, we pick our favorite brand off the shelf–a concoction that if we could only see how it was made, we would likely decide to raise it and cook it ourselves. As the late Dr. Glenn Martin, professor at Indiana Wesleyan University would say, “Ideas have consequences.” What this means for organizational leaders is that developing today’s staff will present a very different challenge compared to other eras. Applying time-tested professional techniques are going to feel foreign, strange and even unsettling, particularly with the emerging generation.

Thinking and Staff Development, business planning, business management, employee engagementIf we want to effectively mentor and develop others then we must get them to think. Why? Good thinking yields good judgment; good judgment yields good decision-making; good decision-making yields win-win scenarios for all parties involved. It produces an owner mindset if we are careful to create a culture that supports risk-taking and innovation. Yet in juxtaposition to thinking cultures are many of today’s business environments, where we’ve followed the same protocol as the rest of society, engaging in telling platforms, communicating conformity rather than encouraging the originality and creativity that come from contemplation and having our conclusions tested by the questions and thinking of others.

If we really want to develop staff into people that can ultimately take our place, we have to engage in a more radical approach. I remember becoming aware of this truth when my boss walked into my office one day as I was standing in front of my window, staring at the outside world. He snuck up behind me and said in a pronounced voice, “Caught you!” I was so embarrassed–I knew I wasn’t really “working.” I’ll never forget his next statement… “I caught you thinking, and just so you know, that’s what I pay you to do.” He then walked out. This boss of mine is the reason I am who I am today, thanks to his ability to know the right and professional thing to do to make me a better man and a more professional manager.

Below are some keys steps to develop thinking in your staff:

  • Ask Questions. A professional manager will ask discovery-based questions rather than provide answers when employees approach them with problem-solving needs. This can feel uncomfortable for staff, since it exposes their current (and usually inadequate) thinking and makes them feel vulnerable. A safe culture is a prerequisite. In school, when taking tests, we are presented with questions for which we must provide answers. We study because we know we are going to be asked difficult questions. And if we’ve studied hard enough, we’ll give the right answer. Telling bosses stunt the growth and development of their staff.
  • Next Steps. To ensure an employee fully owns their job, all next steps must be placed on them. If we say to our staff, “Let me think it over and I’ll get back with you,” we’ve stumbled in our professional role. What we are really saying when this happens is, “I don’t trust your thinking, so I’m going to use my thinking until I come up with the right answer.” One of the key principles when training a soldier how to shoot is to keep the instructor’s finger off the trigger. If we hope to increase our employees’ competency over time, we need to push the thinking down, keep the problem-solving on them, and avoid doing their work.
  • Insure Decision-making. It would be a disaster if, by only asking questions and assigning next steps, our employees went out like the old cartoon character Tennessee Tuxedo and acted on their half-baked ideas. We’d spend much of our time accounting to our boss, making excuses for the actions of our employees and our inability to lead. This is why I like Bill Oncken’s Freedom Scale. Depending on our anxiety level, there are certain levels of freedom we assign to employee decisions to insure sound actions. If we don’t like their ideas, rather than give them the answer, we find the next best question to ask to help them see the bigger picture.

I know what you are thinking. All this sounds great but it takes too much time. And, time it does take. But, like a good financial investment, it means delaying current gratification for long-term gain. The truth is, for a telling boss, he or she will spend most of their time answering the same questions over and over again, which is a waste of time. By applying these principles on the front end of staff development, we’ll produce people who will ultimately think and judge the same way we do. If you want your staff to improve in their judgments and decision-making, then you must cultivate your thinking in them. This same process works well with teenage children, by the way.

Coaching questions: When your employees seek your direction or some version of problem-solving, how do you usually respond? How can you take steps to make sure your thinking is being developed in them, so that they can ultimately replace you in a succession process? Write your answers in your journal.

Read more coaching principles from Dean Harbry on the Internal Innovations website.

Building Relationships

When it comes to building meaningful and successful relationships with your family, friends, colleagues and clients, effective communication is foundational.

Are You Building Sound Relationships?Communication DNA Profile

The quality of your relationship with any person has a direct impact on the quality of decisions that get made. If the communication is poor, people start making decisions around each other because the trust has been diminished. Also, poor decisions can be made because the information has not been heard as intended.

How Do You Naturally Communicate?

You naturally communicate based on who you are and how you see the world. Of course, how the other person hears the message depends on who they are. So often there is a gap that needs to be bridged between what was said and what was heard. Close the Gap.

One of the keys to success in any relationship is closing this gap by communicating with the other person on their terms and not your own. How the message is communicated becomes as important as the message itself. This is not always easy because when we are under pressure or out of our comfort zone, we will tend to revert back to our natural behavior.

Learn How To Improve Your Relationships

Understanding the communication preferences and life perspectives of yourself and others will help you to:

  • Communicate with others on their terms
  • Navigate differences more easily
  • Build greater trust in all of your relationships
  • Connect more quickly with others
  • Understand what motivates you and others

Knowing your own Communication Style is the first step in working towards effective communication with others.

Find out your Communication DNA Style by completing our Communication DNA Profile -Click Here.

“Know, Engage and Grow Your Customers” for an annual cost of $10 or less per person. For information on our Enterprise Solutions for improving Relationship Performance – Click Here.

Identifying the Human Behavior Risks in Your Business

Back in March of this year, I wrote a blog about managing the human risks in your business. This issue has not gone off the radar screen. Identifying the human behavior risks in your business is critical to success. Every person has natural “blind-spots” which, if they go unchecked, can lead to individual performance failures, team failures, leadership failures and ultimately significant business problems. Regardless of the size of your business, the behavior of your people will influence the result. The influence will be higher the more senior the person is in the business. Look at why some major companies have failed in recent years – it is not the poor economy or financial markets, rather they have exposed the fundamental issues, particularly the behavior of leaders.

Some of the blind-spots may not seem that bad – e.g. uncomfortable to confront a problem, lack of patience, emotional decision-maker, poor planner, too driven and so on. However, these problems easily compound themselves at the individual level, then escalate when combined with others blind-spots.

Do you know where the blind-spots in your business are?

We have recently launched the Business Risk Management Report from our Business DNA profile which specifically identifies these risks. Please click here for an example.