The character trait analysis of leaders has been a frequent way to distinguish between the personalities because the political elite’s personalities do have the capability and scope to influence their political stance and policies(Chapter 6: The Individual | Essentials of International Relations, 5e: W. W. Norton StudySpace). Even in the world of today where the military elite has a lot of power and are considered as the true puppeteers behind the puppet show of global politics. That is considered particularly true in case of United States of America as the Pentagon has a lot of say in the matters of policy(Hooks). The speculation that there is no change in the policy of US with the change of Presidents has been around for a long time and was very apparently provable, but after the election of Donald Trump, there are certain areas of policy that seem under the strong control of the President. He is a very good example of how a leader influences a nation and its policy and will be taken as one of the leaders for analysis. The other leader for comparison and contrast will be Obama, the former President of Russia.
The analysis can be done according to the five-factor Model of personality. Both the leaders will be seen in the light of the necessary traits discussed in the model. The traits are Openness, Conscientiousness, extraversion, Agreeableness, Neuroticism.
Openness is considered as a very important trait of Personality. It means the capability of a person to adapt with accordance of the environment and have an emotional maturity. It can be considered as the mindfulness of the leader to see different perspectives and give a rational judgment instead of taking things personally and complicating situations(George). In case of Obama and Donald Trump, the two are very different on this factor. Obama has a very open and strong demeanor towards the opposing opinions and always responds with clarity whereas Trump is famous for making things personal. He has been recorded saying very outrageous things about people and their ideologies without thinking about the consequences. As a leader is representative of a nation, he has to be careful about everything he/she says but in case of Trump the openness to new ideas does not seem evident. Obama has been very strict in his dealings but his attitude has always been very professional.
The control of one’s impulses is vital, and the leader who cannot control his/her impulses is not a good leader. In the age of sensitivity on every word, the leaders have to be more than careful in saying things. There has to be a very strict filtering process of saying whatever a leader believes in because there is no way to guess what word would stir controversy and end up becoming a problem. The role of Donald Trump’s Twitter is the total opposite of the sensitivity that is required of a leader in this era of constant information. Obama in comparison had been very sensitive in saying things. The American policy seems to be the only thing on his mind and has never said more than what is needed of him. For Example, When America was bombing Syria Obama never agreed to interviews and when he did he did not over-talk. He would briefly answer the question with his perspective. Trump, on the other hand, boasts very immaturely about things that do not suit a leader in any way.
Extroversion is a very significant leadership trait that has its roots in the social conduct of the person in question. Extroversion is one of the qualities that are there in case of Both Trump and Barak Obama, but the level and latitude of extroversion are entirely dissimilar. Barak Obama is a leader from a relatively less wealthy family, and he understands the mentality of his people. On the other hand, Trump because of being a rich man has his self-centric way of dealing with people(Donald Trump Appears to Shove World Leader out of the Way at Nato Summit | The Independent). The responsibilities of a leader do not just end at making policies, but he has to keep a decorated personality that would inspire people. In case of Donald Trump, he has been able to attract and motivate a particular group of people, but a big chunk of the population still has to be convinced of his legitimacy as a leader of all Americans. The following of celebrities in the US is one of the ways for Trump to portray his positive image but his appearances in Public till now have not shown his positive side because of insensitive behavior towards different communities.
The factor of Agreeableness seems same as extroversion, but there is the crucial difference in the source of energy and the outlook of the person from outsiders’ perspective. Agreeableness is a character trait that is a must-have for a leader. A leader needs a certain amount of acceptability from the nation that he is the leader of. So in case of Donald Trump, a system has chosen him. The system is being called flawed, but it is the same system, which leads to the election of every other leader in the history of America. The Agreeableness of Donald Trump is not as much as Barak Obama because of the overall attitude towards people. Trump has made very bold and offensive claims towards almost all the communities and showed a particular xenophobic inclination that has considerably downed his likeability.
Neuroticism is not necessarily a negative trait. It encompasses traits like confidence and comfort level in one’s skin. The Obama administration has a very different type of confidence in comparison with the Trump administration. The confidence level of Trump is very formidable in the face of many mess ups that have been seen during his presidency. The problems in White House leaks and lack of planning is mind boggling from the perspective of policy making, but Trump never lost his confidence. Obama’s administration, on the other hand, is very composed and collected, but the constant changes in Trump administrations are overwhelming. Trump has started with awkwardness during his campaign and gave way to the speculations about him not being ‘presidential’ enough. Most of his critics at the time were silenced by saying that he will become more professional when he gets in the office, but his demeanor did not change enough and lead to a chaotic Trump government.
Donald Trump has an indubitable aptitude for self-aggrandizement, for somebody whose duty is to drive and lead the free-world, no sum of bloviating could hide a letdown to distribute the possessions. It might not be reasonable that the two Presidents of the United States are predictable to attain too much in their initial 100 days in the White House. However the norms and standard at the least could assist the United States to involve in specific valuable side-by-side contrasts and comparison. One opinion it makes impeccably understood is that, while Barak Obama was no Roosevelt, President Donald Trump is even nearer to be as capable or effective as compare to that of Barak Obama.
Chapter 6: The Individual | Essentials of International Relations, 5e: W. W. Norton StudySpace. http://www.wwnorton.com/college/polisci/essentials-of-international-relations5/ch/06/summary.aspx. Accessed 2 Nov. 2017.
Donald Trump Appears to Shove World Leader out of the Way at Nato Summit | The Independent. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/donald-trump-shove-montenegro-prime-minister-dusko-markovic-nato-summit-brussels-a7756186.html. Accessed 2 Nov. 2017.
George, Jennifer M. “Emotions, and Leadership: The Role of Emotional Intelligence.” Human Relations, vol. 53, no. 8, Aug. 2000, pp. 1027–55. SAGE Journals, doi:10.1177/0018726700538001.
Hooks, Gregory. “The Rise of the Pentagon and U.S. State Building: The Defense Program as Industrial Policy.” American Journal of Sociology, vol. 96, no. 2, Sept. 1990, pp. 358–404. journals.uchicago.edu (Atypon), doi:10.1086/229533.