In the American workplace, there is sadly not often room for individuality. If people want to advance up the corporate ladder, they usually have to conform to a certain mold of how “things have been done before.”
But one man in a very high-up position is casting out prior conventions and refusing to be bound by them. Instead, he has the guts to do things his way.
Meet Donald Trump. He is fresh into his new position as President of the United States.
Nearly every day, Trump does something new that is completely unprecedented for his job, turning those prior norms into things of the past. And it is freaking awesome.
- Before now, it was the norm for presidents to release their tax returns in the interest of public transparency. Trump, however, has refused to do so, insisting that no one cares about it. After all, it’s his job, his choice!
- Before now, it was the norm for presidents to conduct themselves in a dignified, respectful manner in public, keeping their thoughts close to the vest. But Trump uses Twitter every day to vent and hurl insults at everyone who opposes him, and sometimes even threatens people. You wanted transparency, so there you go. It’s like we have access to his diary! Plus, it’s so refreshing to see a man in a high profile position show that it’s OK for men to show emotions and vulnerability.
- Before now, it was the norm for presidents to either sell or place their financial holdings in independently managed blind trusts prior to taking office, in order to avoid potential conflicts of interest. They also followed (for all we know, at least) the emoluments clause of the Constitution, which forbids government officials from benefiting monetarily from foreign governments. Trump, on the other hand, placed his holdings in a revocable trust managed by his sons, steers foreign leaders to his privately owned hotel down the street from the White House, and has expanded his family business globally. Take that, establishment!
- Before now, it was the norm for presidents to respect a crucial part of the first amendment, freedom of the press. Trump, however, continuously refers to nearly every media outlet besides Fox News as “fake news” and “the enemy of the people.” He took the very real problem of fake news—fabricated stories intended on tricking people—and gave it a new meaning: news reports that were unfavorable of him. That is true innovation.
- Before now, it was the norm for presidents to conduct national security business in highly secured spaces, off-limits to the public. But Trump has met with foreign leaders in his privately owned resort, which anyone with $200,000 has access to. On top of that, he has even ordered missile strikes from a public space of his resort, while recalling in better detail the “piece of beautiful chocolate cake” he was eating than the country he bombed. Finally, a higher-up who’s a little more casual and not so uptight all the time!
- Before now, it was the norm for presidents to speak out harshly against dictators and brutal strongman leaders around the world, showing American leadership in freedom and equal rights. But not Trump. He has praised a host of murderous leaders, including North Korea’s Kim Jong Un, the Philippines’ Rodrigo Duterte, Egypt’s Abdel Fatah el-Sisi, Turkey’s Recep Tayyip Erdogen, and most of all, Russia’s Vladimir Putin. Those guys at least get good TV ratings, right? Nothing wrong with shaking things up a bit and having some fun.
- Before now, it was the norm for presidents to have respect for the other two equal branches of the federal government and essential parts of the federal bureaucracy. Trump, rather, has referred to federal judges who struck down his immigration bans as “so-called judges” and fired the acting attorney general for refusing to uphold his unconstitutional travel ban. But the real doozy was firing the FBI director who was leading an investigation against him, at the advice of his newly appointed attorney general, who couldn’t take part in that investigation because of lying about his communications with the hostile foreign power that subverted our democracy and is the subject of the investigation in the first place. Literally no one has ever done that. The trailblazing continues!
We could go on and on, but it is abundantly clear this Trump fellow will always conduct himself at his new job his way, and on his terms. Millions of archaic thinkers are bashing him for this for some reason, but so far he has remained undeterred—a true maverick, and an inspiration to us all.
Doubters aside, he teaches us an important lesson: You should always dare to be different at work, and don’t feel bound by the conventions of past people in your position.
Dance like no one is watching. Just like Donald.