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Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Change, but is it for the better?

I'm all for relaxed and open atmospheres in the workplace, but a certain level of professionalism needs to be maintained. This is especially important at the top of any professional hierarchy. It is typical that, where the role models slack off, those who follow will slack of as well, by orders of magnitude. While one may scoff at the suit and tie dress code, how one dresses influences how one behaves, as well as how those around you respond. One of first pieces of leadership advice I learned in business is to dress the part. If you want to be treated like a professional, look and act like one. It's much the same in politics.

Things have certainly changed in the White House.

source - H/T to Dust My Broom

"As an employee who works on G Street near the White House personnel office and the White House complex, there certainly has been a lot of change in the people. During the Bush years, White House employees dressed professionally and exercised professional discretion. The conversations among Bush staffers in nearby coffee shops such as M.E. Swing were quiet, and they absolutely never discussed business."

"The new Obama staffers, usually no older than 30 years of age, seem to have never heard that loose lips sink ships. Instead of tucking their blue or green White House badges discretely into a shirt pocket as Bush staffers did, the Obama staffers flaunt it in public. And their loud talk is always about shop. We recently listened to White house staffers in a pizza parlor on the 1700 block of G Street discussing details about forthcoming White House policy toward communist China. On another occasion, at Potbelly Sandwiches, we overheard White House staffers discussing details of the upcoming Russian summit and policy toward the Republic of Georgia."

"The happening and hip Obama staffers look and act like they are on campus. On the afternoon of July 31, three White House staffers were at McReynolds Liquor at 1776 G St. The three loaded up boxes of wine bottles, hard liquor and several bags of ice and carried the party straight into the Old Executive Office Building. Another July day, other young White House staffers were seen carrying two cases of Bud Light out of the White House personnel office."

"Flip-flops, tennis shoes, unbuttoned dress shirts with ties, and casual wear are now in style at the White House. Razors are out for men. Many male staffers seem to shave every couple of days. While it might seem cute and whimsical to have a young bunch take over the reigns of power, the world is more serious than these folks seem to realize."

Not only are these people dressing unprofessionally, but their behaviour is worrying. Drinking on the job? Discussing such topics in public? Flaunting their ID badges? In the world the rest of us live in, these people would have been fired! Especially when working in areas where security is a concern!

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