3 Lessons HR Can Learn From the Trump Administration
March 9, 2017

We are less than 2 months in and Donald Trump’s presidency has been unprecedented in so many ways. His cabinet has weathered turnover, media discomfiture, and more, seemingly unlike any other administration has dealt with this early in the game. HR professionals can learn a few lessons from the Trump Administration on how to avoid a few pitfalls within their organization.

1) Bad Hires Cause Major Setbacks

Per the Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM), the financial impact of a bad hire can be up to 5 times that employee’s annual salary. While we don’t know the dollar amount associated with the Trump Administration turnover, it presents some valuable lessons. While the resignation of National Security Advisor Michael Flynn and withdrawals of the DOL, Army, and Navy Secretaries have all been attributed to a variety of reasons, an in-depth, collaborative interview process could have helped avoid some of the confusion and media scrutiny.

Today’s HR professionals can use sophisticated applicant tracking systems to not only source top candidates, but also to implement a team-based hiring approach to create a 360-degree hiring process. This allows for input from key people, say the Vice President, to review candidate information on key qualification questions (i.e. Russian conversations). A team-based hiring approach also allows key stakeholders to ask candidates pertinent questions about imperative issues that could impact their overall job performance or acceptance of the job. A thorough ATS will also allow users to run background checks and avoid public embarrassment of things like Oprah tapes popping up.

2) Employees Need Clear Understanding of Ground Rules

One crucial part that HR plays is ensuring that all employees understand a company’s mission, vision, and acceptable conduct. While the majority of President Trump’s team seems to be crystal clear on their mission and vision, some have called into question their understanding of how to conduct themselves in the Oval Office after a photos emerged of Steve Bannon dressed too casually and Kellyanne Conway checking her phone with her feet on the sofa. While this is hardly a national security crisis, proper conduct is important in maintaining a positive public outlook.

HR managers can ensure that their employees properly understand acceptable conduct by outlining how employees are to behave in their employee handbooks. As outlined in the infographic, 8 Ways An Employee Handbook Can Create a Great Workplace, a handbook lays the groundwork for a company’s culture and influences the day-to-day functions of an organization.

3) Social Media Controversy Reflects on the Whole Company

As a private citizen, the views Donald Trump expressed on social media could simply be attributed to him or at most, his corporation. But that was part of the “The Donald” persona. He was brash, bold, said what was on his mind, and didn’t have to give too much regard for backing up his sentiments. But as POTUS, his Twitter expressions can now set precedent and can affect policies for the entire country.

Like the President, before employment with your company, a candidate’s online expressions may have just impacted their lives. But once hired, their views and expressions can extend to their representation of your company. Social media has expanded our world view and for companies, it has expanded public consciousness into who makes up a company and what values they hold. We’ve seen the high profile cases of employees like Justine Sacco or Pamela Taylor who both causes such a public stirs for their views expressed on social media that employers were forced to terminate those employees in order to save their company’s public reputation.

So how can you protect your organization? Develop a Social Media Strategy. Click here to download the complete sample social media policy from the pros at HR Support Center. The sample includes the following key takeaways when directing employees on social media use:

  • Be respectful
  • Be honest and accurate
  • Post only appropriate and respectful content

Navigating today’s complex work environment can be difficult for Presidents and HR professionals alike. But not to worry we are here to help. Contact us today to learn about our full suite of services designed to keep your business running efficiently and effectively.