If Politics is Big Business, Then Should Politicians Be Minding Their Manners?

Giving a presentation business etiquetteIn busi­ness, you should never speak ill of your co-workers, man­agers or com­pe­ti­tion..  You should always do your research on your com­peti­tors and you should under promise and over deliver.  By not fol­low­ing these sim­ple rules, you will more than likely not be suc­cess­ful unless your busi­ness is politics.

Pol­i­tics is big busi­ness and in pol­i­tics all is fair  includ­ing lying.  Remem­ber these famous pres­i­den­tial quotes: Read my lips, no new taxes,I did not have sex­ual rela­tions with that woman, or I’ll have the nego­ti­a­tions tele­vised on C-SPAN.

Since pol­i­tics is busi­ness then the Pres­i­dent is like the CEO of Amer­ica and we are the share­hold­ers in the com­pany.  As share­hold­ers, shouldn’t we expect our CEO to lead by exam­ple and get us a higher return on our invest­ment  (insert your own econ­omy joke here.)

While the Pres­i­dent was out stump­ing for Martha Coak­ley dur­ing her Mass­a­chu­setts Sen­ate race, he not only embar­rassed him­self but also offended me and count­less other share­hold­ers.  Dur­ing a speech, Pres­i­dent Obama said that he did not know the oppo­nent or his record.  This is our CEO?  How could he go out and sup­port some­one and not know what their oppo­nent stands for or his record?  This shows an unac­cept­able lack of prepa­ra­tion and care.

Dur­ing this same speech, Pres­i­dent Obama mocked the oppo­nent, which crossed the line and offended me and count­less oth­ers.  It was in response to a cam­paign ad run by the oppo­nent, Scott Brown. His ad fea­tured him dri­ving around in his pickup truck and talk­ing to vot­ers show­ing off his com­mon man image.  Well, the Pres­i­dent said that every­one can run slick ads and every­one can buy a truck.

Mr. Pres­i­dent, I guess you haven’t noticed the econ­omy lately maybe you’ve been pre­oc­cu­pied with health care.  Well, I can­not buy a truck.  Between two kids in col­lege, a strug­gling busi­ness and try­ing to keep the roof over our head and food on the table, a truck, new or used, is some­thing my hus­band or I could not qual­ify for.  So, no, not any­body can buy a truck and I’m sure I’m not alone in this.

The President’s attempt at humor blew up in his face and should have been averted all together.  I under­stand that he is doing his best to sup­port his party, but as the Pres­i­dent he should remain impar­tial towards the opponent.

What does this polit­i­cal rant have to do with eti­quette?  Every­thing!  Since pol­i­tics is big busi­ness and the Pres­i­dent is our CEO, he needs to adhere to the rules of busi­ness eti­quette and he has failed mis­er­ably.  He has spo­ken ill of the com­pe­ti­tion.  He has been unpre­pared for a speech and he has offended his shareholders.

Before Pres­i­dent Obama makes another speech or his speech­writer, Jon Favreau, writes another speech, I will be more than happy to meet with them and give them and their staff a refresher course.

Jules Hirst is an eti­quette instruc­tor based in Los Ange­les, who believes it is never too late to make a last­ing impres­sion.  She teaches classes for chil­dren, teens and adults.  She is Pres­i­dent of Eti­quette Con­sult­ing Inc., an eti­quette con­sult­ing firm.  Learn more at Eti­quette Con­sult­ing Inc  She also is head of Hearts For The City, a non-profit orga­ni­za­tion teach­ing eti­quette and social skills to under­priv­i­leged chil­dren, fos­ter chil­dren and peo­ple re-entering the workforce.