'Now is the winter of our discontent made glorious summer by this son of York' William Shakespeare
And the tension continues to rise. But what are some of the nuggets that we can take from this entire two-year drama?
- Pay attention to the noise! The Republican nominee spent enormous energy barking around the issues that drove the fear factor in blue collar workers and low-income earners. Facts didn't matter much...what mattered to this core group was a message that gave them hope...we will get jobs, improved security and the restoration of our dignity. We will no longer be the forgotten!
- Don't underestimate discontent! Those marginalized and struggling to etch out a living every day, have a powerful voice when it matters; it is called a vote. 60 million people showed what the accumulated effect of block voting can do. Whether the end result would guarantee that their lives would improve didn't matter at the time.
- Don't trust the status quo; challenge it. Many didn't believe the growing mass following of the Republican nominee would last. The ordinary citizen would self-correct and do the right thing. They would recognize the need for maintaining the existing patterns and common sense would prevail.
- Issues matter. Many of those who voted for change felt that their issues were not considered important by the current order. The answer became disruption-at-any-cost.
- Remain active citizens and hold elected public officials accountable. The shock and anger expressed after realizing the outcome no one wanted had materialized, was too-little-too-late. Less than 50% of eligible voters actually voted. The rest simply didn't bother to pitch and exercise their civic duty. A healthy democracy requires regular practice and citizen awareness.
The-above pointers are not exhaustive and not exclusive to the arena of politics. These are indicators that leaders and workers in any organization should be aware of and pay attention to. Too many leaders have become intoxicated with the power their positions carry, arrogant towards the constituencies they meant to serve and beholding to special interest groups. Furthermore, self preservation is often more important than doing what is right. Be careful if you find yourself in leadership and you forget you're meant to serve. You may get the shock of your life when a tsunami of the disaffected make their presence known. Be warned.