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Mitt Romey's leadership

Posted by IlliniNation88 
Mitt Romey's leadership
April 15, 2012 11:25PM
Since Mitt Romney is the presumptive Republican nominee for President I decided to share a paper I wrote about Mitt Romney last semester for my political leadership class. To give you all a heads up this paper was written to study Romney's leadership style. I reference several sources that are not included in my bibliography. I can get you the names of those books if you wanted to check them out. Also, there are not any internal citations. I use footnotes for my internal citations and footnotes cannot be copied and pasted. I am also note sure if this paper is the final paper I turned in; I believe it is, but if it isn't then there may be some grammatical errors, please ignore those.


On the first day of class we were told this country is facing a leadership problem. It is the reason why the country is currently in such dire straits and why it cannot seem to get itself out. Our elected ‘leaders’ in Washington are more concerned with playing the blame game than coming up with a solution. Our President also is not a strong leader. There is no doubt he had the right intentions coming into office, but he has shown he is not capable of bringing people together and he is not willing to make tough, unpopular choices. I am going to study Mitt Romney. I want to determine what kind of person he is, what kind of leader he is and I want to look at his record to determine if he is capable of bringing true leadership to Washington.
Mitt Romney is a quintessential Guardian, specifically he is an ESTJ; a supervisor Guardian. Kiersey says that guardians use concrete words and language; they do not like the abstract. I looked through a number of Mitt Romney speeches and he almost always is talking about his past, his experiences or his accomplishments. Guardians are also interested in material things because they can be measured and analyzed.Romney willtypically use statistics to show that President Obama has been a failure.He likes to measure his success against Obama’s failures. He likes to show, using hard data, he will be a better President. In a speech delivered at the “Defending American Dream Summit” Romney spent the first half of his speech listing facts, he had a statistic for everything and freely shared his knowledge with everyone.
Keirsey also suggests that guardians are most interested in commerce for its practical use. Mitt Romney when talking about his background typically states, “I spent my career in the private sector. I’ve met a payroll, and signed the front, as well as the back, of a payroll check. I’ve actually saved jobs and created jobs. And I know what it takes to get America back to work.” Romney has been involved and interested in business most of his life. The Atlantic gives a brief history of Romney’s achievements, specifically that he turned around Bain capitals fortunes in 1991 and 1992 when it appeared as though the company would be going belly up. Romney did the same thing when he took over the Salt Lake Organizing Committee. By all accounts the Committee was in deep trouble, but as he did with Bain Capital Romney was able to get it on its feet and make it successful. Romney’s background in business is important to him. Romney wants to be President and wants to bring his background in business to DC in order to spur economic growth and also to make the government more accountable, effective, efficient and fiscally responsible.
Guardians are concerned with morality; they have a deep sense of right and wrong. Republicans pride themselves on being the party of family values. Romney will typically include at least some mention of the Republican Party’s core social values. Romney is not just being a politician, either. Based on personal accounts from those who have known Romney since college he is a moral man, who is dedicated to his family and they even added that he does not swear.
Keirsey says guardians are pessimistic about the future. Mitt Romney is not pessimistic about the future in any way. In a speech delivered at the Values Voters Summit on October 8, 2011 Romney said, “I am guided by one overwhelming conviction and passion: this century must be an American Century. In an American Century, America has the strongest economy and the strongest military in the world. In an American Century, America leads the free world and the free world leads the entire world.” Romney is telling people he believes America’s best days are ahead and not in the past. He is clearly optimistic about the future of America and he wants the American people to know that hope is not lost. He does, however, say if we do not change course and elect a new President the future may not be so bright. Romney is also not just saying this to become President. Romney’s classmates at Harvard said he has always been optimistic and upbeat.
Keirsey also states guardians are set in the past because they are afraid of change. Republicans are certainly wary of change. They do not like the unknown. Romney seems to feel this way as well. It is clear from his speeches that he wants to run this country the way he ran his state and businesses because it worked for him. He is not willing to follow Obama’s example and take risks because risks have the potential to backfire like they did for Obama.
Guardians support a strong defense, in other words security is important to them. Republicans love defense and security. Romney has made very clear he will not continue Obama’s policy of cutting defense spending; he wants to make the military bigger and stronger and provide them the support and funding they need to keep America safe. Obama has actually continued most of the policies started under the Bush Administration, so I believe a lot of Romney’s speeches regarding security are more political and do not reflect what he will actually do. Unless Romney believes President Bush was a weak president when it came to protecting America (which I doubt he does.)
Mitt Romney is also an excellent example of Riso and Hudson’s Type Eight personality. Type eight personalities are big personalities; they are independent, resourceful, assertive, determined and competitive. Type eights are natural born leaders, as a result they tend to make excellent politicians and businessmen. Romney displays a number of the qualities important to eights. First and foremost he is energetic, compassionate, engaging and intense. More importantly he keeps his promises. Riso and Hudson state that an eights word means everything to them, when they say they are going to do something they do it. According to Romney’s friends he never failed to keep his word, he always did his work and was exceptionally responsible.
Romney pursued a joint business and law degree at Harvard University. According to the Boston Globe the dual degree is an intense program that demands a lot out of the students. \Romney excelled in the program and graduated with honors. Type eights are energetic and independent;they strive for excellence and give nothing short of their best in all of their endeavors. Romney also has a history of taking on immense challenges (Bain Capital in 1990, taking over the Salt Lake Organizing Committee) and coming out the victor. Type eights willchallenge themselves primarily because they want to show they are capable of taking on any challenge they are confronted with.
Mitt Romney is also fiercely independent. There is perhaps no greater example of this than the health care law he passed while Governor of Massachusetts, commonly referred to as Romneycare. Romney became the first and so far only Republican Governor to ever sign and implement such a progressive health care overhaul. As the Boston Globe points out what Romney did was actually fairly Conservative and was even supported by certain Conservatives when it was initially passed. They changed their tune shortly after Obama became President, because he modeled his own health care legislation after Romney’s. It would be easy for Romney to say he made a mistake, but he has not done that. He has instead defended his program, stating, "Our plan was a state solution to a state problem. His is a power grab by the federal government to put in a place a one-size-fits-all plan." This is what makes Romney unique, because it would be easy for him to turn against his program; in fact it may even score him points with the Republican base. Doing that is not in his nature; type eights are proud of their achievements and for Romney this is his greatest achievement as Governor.
Romney is a type eight wing seven. What this means is his dominant personality is a type eight and his weaker personality is a type seven. Type eight wing seven people are outgoing, energetic, quick and have big egos. In my opinion anyone wishing to run for and be President has to have at least some of these qualities. Running for any political office takes a lot of dedication and energy. Candidates have to devote their entire life to the campaign and there is no guarantee they will be successful in their bid. Furthermore, candidates have to be outgoing; they have to appeal to people. Voters like people like Mitt Romney, people who are confident, have a plan for the future and who are willing to take on any task, no matter how big.
Strengths Based Leadershipseeks to identify a person’s strengths, because, as the authors, Tom Rath and Barry Conchie state a truly successful leader will be aware of their strengths and focus solely on them. Romney’s top five strengths would most likely be analytical, command, competition, deliberative and restorative. Analytical people have an ability to dig deeper and find the reasoning behind any given situation. A lot of Romney’s analytical skill likely came from his time at Harvard. The dual degree program he was enrolled in forced him to look at cases and to read cases in order to understand how to be a successful executive and lawyer. Furthermore, Romney had to be able to analyze the problems facing both Bain capital and the Salt Lake Organizing Committee in order to successfully turn those two organizations around.
People strong in command take charge of a situation, they are decisive and strong. Again, Mitt Romney’s history as a businessman shows he is more than capable of taking control of any situation and turning it around. He has shown he is bold and decisive and is willing to make the hard choices in order to achieve the necessary results. People strong in competition are obviously highly competitive they love to compare themselves to others, so show their strengths and the others weaknesses. Romney loves to do this on the campaign trail. He continually compares his record as a businessman and Governor of Massachusetts to President Obama’s record. He highlights all of his achievements and continually focuses on President Obama’s ‘failures’. Part of this is good politics, Romney has to give voters a reason to elect him and not any of the other Republicans and if he is the nominee he has to show voters he will be a better president than Obama. However, it is also simply part of his nature. I believe most politicians are naturally competitive because politics is inherently competitive.
Deliberative leaders are those leaders who are careful when making decisions; they anticipate obstacles and plan accordingly. This strength sort of goes hand in hand with the last one, restorative; restorative leaders are good at dealing with problems and have an excellent ability of taking a situation and resolving it. Romney has a clear record of success. When Romney took over the reins at Bain and Co. he was faced with a company on the brink of ruin. Under his leadership the company turned around within three years as business increased by 20%. The Salt Lake Organizing Committee was in just as bad shape when Romney became head of it. They were facing a deficit in excess of $370 million and support was waning. Romney again orchestrated a successful turnaround. When Romney became Governor of Massachusetts he was faced a huge deficit. He promised voters his first order of business would be to put the state on a sound financial footing and to turn the deficit into a surplus. Romney again was successful and turned the large $1-2 billion budget gap into a $700 million surplus. Romney has shown time and time again that he is more than up to the task of taking on challenges. He has an incredible ability to turn things around.
Not since Ronald Reagan has the Republican Party had a good public speaker either run for President or be President. Mitt Romney may change that trend. Romney is a fairly decent public speaker. He is not as good as Ronald Reagan, but compared to President Bush and the current field of Republican candidates he is a great speaker. He also looks like a President. He is calm, composed, in control and he hardly seems rattled. Despite his overall strength in this area he is not President Obama. President Obama is one the best speakers I have ever seen. Romney cannot and will not beat Obama in this area. However, as far as Republicans go I think Romney is a good communicator and will be able to hold his own against Obama.
Romney is a businessman and businessmen understand organization. One of the reasons Romney was so successful in all of his business ventures is he successfully reorganized.He made them more efficient, compatible and effective. As Governor Romney instantly went to work reorganizing the state, the Boston Globe reports that he was the state’s first CEO-Governor. They report he and his old business partners went to work finding inefficiency and waste in order to turn the state’s financial woes around. Furthermore, Romney amassed a dream team of cabinet members (the Boston Globe was more than impressed with his cabinet choices!) President Bush also amassed an impressive list of cabinet members when he was President and that backfired on him. Primarily because he was unable to prove that he was the one in charge because he had so many big personalities. Romney did not have that problem, he ran a tight ship according to the Boston Globe and it was clear that he was the one in charge. Romney’s restructuring and organization ultimately achieved the stated goal of turning around the state’s financial situation.
For the most part Romney possesses keen political skill. He was, after all, elected Governor in a solidly Democratic state. Romney also faced a Democrat legislature. Despite this fact Romney was able to successfully implement a number of his major policy goals. Despite facing a Democratic state legislature Romney was successful in restructuring the state to improve efficiency, accountability, effectiveness and to decrease costs as a way to turn around the state’s financial woes. He also was able to successfully win approval for his health care bill. This was no easy task. First and foremost Democrats were not always on board with an insurance mandate, for a long time that was a Republican proposal. He had to convince Democrats that it was in their best interest to go against the party line and support it. He also had to convince Republicans that such a progressive approach to health care was necessary. In the end he was successful (although the overall success of the program is still being debated.) He did have some slip ups.
Two examples really stand out. Romney tried to overturn the Massachusetts Supreme Court’s decision in favor of gay marriage. He was met with hostility in the legislature and he went out on a limb to try and force the legislature to back a proposal which defined marriage strictly in a traditional sense. This decision ultimately backfired on him and it was a pretty public backfire on his part. His response to an accident in the big dig left many questioning whether or not he was out of touch. Despite these two fairly public debacles Romney was quite successful in Massachusetts. Despite dealing with a Democratic legislature he was able to pass numerous reforms and bills which drastically altered the direction of the state.
Romney’s vision seems pretty straight forward. He is a businessman and his vision as Governor was to bring his business experience to the capital in order to turn around the state’s financial woes, make government more efficient, effective and accountable and to create jobs and spur economic growth. This seems to be what he wants to do in Washington. I do not doubt that he has vision, but I am not sure he really knows what he wants to do outside of economics. He seems to be toeing the Republican line when it comes to national security issues and social issues. It begs the question; if Mitt Romney is President and he turns around the economy what will he do next? As Governor he focused on education reform and health care reform. These are areas that will also need to be addressed if he is President, but Romney has not yet articulated (at least not entirely) what else he plans to do as President.
Romney is incredibly intelligent, no one can deny that. He graduated from BYU with a 4.0 GPA and was valedictorian. At Harvard he graduated from law school with honors and was a Baker Scholar at the business school. Romney has also shown his intelligence and business savvy time and time again. Each new problem he encounters gives him an opportunity to not only show his intelligence but also to expand it. He has been so successful primarily because he understands how business works and he always knows what needs to be done in order to turn a faltering organization or business around. His peers clearly respect his intelligence. Perhaps one reason his cabinet did not overshadow him was his cabinet members did not question his intelligence; they knew he knew what he was doing. They respected him and knew that he would consider all the facts and come to the best conclusion possible.
I mentioned that Romney was accused of having an emotional deficit as a result of his response to the big dig accident. I think this is probably true. Romney has never had to deal with the same problems as ‘average’ Americans. He grew up in a wealthy family and as a result of his intelligence and skill has gone on to be just as successful as his father. He does not understand what most people are going through because he has never had to live in the middle class. He can talk about it, but he does not have any credibility with average Americans. Bill Clinton was successful because he did come from modest roots and became successful in his own right. He also was an excellent communicator and when he spoke people genuinely believed he felt their pain. President Obama is the same way. He did come from the middle class and worked hard to be successful and get to where he is at.
Romney is successful at almost everything he does (although he has not always been successful politically, he lost to Senator Kennedy in 1994 and also lost to McCain in 2008). The question is why; why is he so successful and why has this success thus far not struck a chord with Republican voters. First and foremost Romney is confident, he is confident in himself, his abilities and he believes that he can do anything. His track record certainly does not dispute this fact; he has encountered immense challenges in his life and has always come out on top. I think the primary reason is people are motivated by him; his confidence and his optimism are contagious. He has responded to every challenge with small steps, he restructures an organization, he makes small changes to improve efficiency and cut costs, which all result in quick, drastic change. He turned Bane and Co. around in less than three years, he did the same thing with the Salt Lake Organizing Committee and then again as Governor. Part of the reason for his success is he trusts a select group of people, who in turn trust him and they come together to create a solution. He has garnered respect as a result of his record and people trust his advice, they know he knows what he is talking about. Context has also helped him. He always seems to be in the right place at the right time and always seems to make the right decisions. So given all of this why are Republican voters still wary of him?
I think the main problem is they question his loyalty to Conservative values and so far he has not had his tipping point moment. President Obama had several tipping point moments. The first was his address at the Democrat National Convention in 2004. The other and perhaps most important was his address on race during the democratic primary. Romney has had tipping point moments before, his success at Bane and Co. and the Salt Lake Organizing Committee were certainly major moments in his life. His success while Governor was also a tipping point in his life. His problem is he has not had a tipping point in this campaign.
Romney has followed the Four Agreements quite well. He has been impeccable with his word. When he says something people trust him, not only because he has such an impressive resume, but he has a record of being honest and truthful. When Mitt Romney says he is going to do something people know he means it. Romney also does not seem to take things too personal. This is a must in politics. Politics is dirty and nasty. People cannot get bogged down or take offense to things because they will spend all their time focusing on what others say instead of focusing on themselves and why they are the best person for the job. Romney has so far remained focused on his record, what he wants to do as President and why he would be a better President than Obama and also a better nominee than the other Republicans. Romney does not seem to make assumptions. Most importantly Romney always gives his best. He has been so successful because he has gone into every situation gung ho and he knows exactly what he wants to do in order to turn things around.
Mitt Romney is without a doubt the best choice to run against Obama in 2012. He has a proven record of success, both in the public and private sectors. He is also a curious leader. He is not the quintessential Republican. He understands the party’s faults and weaknesses and is willing to accept that Democrats are not always wrong. In a lot of ways his leadership is a breath of fresh air. This country is in need of a leader who understands what needs to be done to create jobs, grow the economy, and make the government more efficient and to bring down costs. The country also needs a leader who can bring both sides together and Romney has shown he can do all those things. I chose to write about Mitt Romney because I wanted to know more about him; I wanted to see what sort of leader he was and whether or not he was truly cut out to be President. Through the course of writing this paper I have become more than impressed with him. I believe he would be an excellent President and I believe he will change the culture in Washington. He will bring real leadership to DC. I am curious to see how things turn out over the next few months!


Bibliography:

Romney, Mitt. Defending American Dream Summit speech. Washington DC. 18, November 2011. [mittromneycentral.com]

Romney, Mitt. Values voters Summit speech. 8, October 2011.[mittromneycentral.com]

McCardle, Megan. “Romney’s Business” The Atlantic. Web. [www.theatlantic.com]

Hicks, Joshua. “Does Romney deserve Olympic Bragging Rights?” Washington Post 3 November 2011. Web. [www.washingtonpost.com]

Pfeiffer, Sacha. “Romney;s Harvard classmates Recall his Quick Mind, Positive Attitude.” The Boston Globe 26, June 2007. Web. [www.boston.com]

Lehigh, Scott. “GOP’s Lost Love Affair: Romneycare.” The Boston Globe 3, June 2011. Web. [articles.boston.com]

Khan, Huma. “Do Mitt Romney’s Health Care Claims Line Up With Facts?” ABC News 12, May 2011. Web. <[abcnews.go.com];

Romney, Mitt” Current Biography. Accessed using Wilson Web, 14, December 2011. < [vnweb.hwwilsonweb.com];



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 04/15/2012 11:41PM by IlliniNation88.
Re: Mitt Romey's leadership
April 16, 2012 02:11AM
Bottom line - you're a member of the Romney family and you're out trying to change people's impression of good old Milt. Got it - thanks. thumbs up


Oh and it's "Bain Capital" not "Bane and Co." - so sorry, but I'll have to deduct a couple points off your final grade for spelling.
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