During the 2016 presidential campaign, Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton argued that electing Donald Trump as president would set a terrible example for America’s children, as it would show that lying and bullying would be equated with success.
However, it seems that Trump’s election has had a negative influence on American adults as well.
NBC News recently interviewed several human resources experts who said that companies are increasingly dealing with employees who act like President Trump — and are subsequently damaging morale at their places of employment.
Mike Letizia, president of Letizia HR Solutions, Inc., said that Trump’s election last November has coincided with “behavioral changes on the part of employees” in which they adopt a more confrontational, less cooperative approach to dealing with their coworkers.
“We’ve had to do a lot more… talking to employees about the fact that the U.S. government and current administration in Washington, D.C., does not set the standard for professional behavior in the workplace,” he told NBC News.
Roy Cohen, a career counselor and executive coach, told NBC News that rewarding Trump for his behavior has been something of a green light for people who were previously “on the fence” about indulging their most selfish instincts to embrace them completely.
“It allows them to justify that behavior, it gives them an excuse,” he explained. “We expect people to take the high ground… that’s where the reversal seems to be happening. Bad behavior is almost a badge of honor.”
And Seth Spain, an assistant professor of organizational behavior and human resources at the John Molson School of Business at Concordia University, told NBC News that Trump’s gleeful disdain for societal norms are being imitated by more people for one simple reason: They’ve proven to be successful.
“Trump is serving as a negative kind of role model,” he said. “They see his behavior, they see that it worked, it was effective, and use that as a model.”