Donald Trump: Report for your One Week Performance Review
Memorandum from one of your 324,400,000 Supervisors
Mr. Trump, welcome to the Federal Government of the United States of America. We haven’t met personally, but as a taxpaying citizen, I am one of your Supervisors. And as one of your Supervisors, I feel the need to call you in for a performance review after your first week on the job.
I know that some of our guys have done their best to get you and your team up and running, but it seems like things haven’t gotten off to as good of a start as they could have. I don’t fault our team on the ground, they are working under some difficult conditions, but they have brought certain points to my attention, and in this particular case it appears as though I am going to need to take some valuable time out of my busy schedule to check in with you, one of our newest and — yes — highest profile employees.
Please, sit down.
Let’s get this out of the way: the hiring committee was very divided on offering you the position. I happen to be very firmly on the NO side of things, and I have no problem letting you know that, but you know how rigid this organization’s bylaws can be.
Now, I understand that you’re coming to us from the private sector, and that you have some experience in management. In fact, if I’ve read your resume correctly, you’ve somehow never held an entry level or middle management position in your entire life.
I’m sure that from your prior roles, you must have picked up something about representing an organization. Based on your first week with us, I’m not sure that’s translated as well as it could have. As it undoubtedly was with your last position, your conduct does matter, both on and off the job. How you carry yourself, what you say, and how you behave reflects on the organization you’re now a part of. I’d like to think that I don’t need to press this point, but your conduct since you came aboard leads me to believe otherwise.
Donald, I have to level with you: you’re not off to a good start with your new role in the Federal Government of the United States.
Let me get specific, if that’s okay.
First, I’d very much like to hear in a week’s time that you will have stopped focusing on performance metrics not directly related to our organization’s KPIs. It is exciting to start a new job and receive recognition for it, I get it. But now that the hoopla has subsided, it’s not necessary to continue worrying about attendance at your first day of work, nor is it advisable to perseverate on how many of your colleagues and supervisors think you are doing a good job or state that they like you or are fans of you. I have to tell you, Donald: It gives me a lot of anxiety to know that you are telling untruths about this to yourself and others, even if it makes you feel better.
Second, as you know, it is part of your job to give public addresses to your clients, supervisors, direct reports, and the media. You are expected to do this regularly. We are not dictating exactly how often, or requiring you to read from a script (freedom and liberty are two of our core values!), but suffice it say that the other supervisors and I would like to be appraised of your progress directly from you at regular intervals. Do not leave this task to a colleague, and for God’s sake, don’t think that your social media posts are a viable substitute. I suppose we here at the Federal Government of the United States are traditional in that sense. What I’m saying here, Donald, is: we will expect you to keep us directly and personally informed of any significant changes or developments related to your position right away, via our organization’s established communication channels.
Third, and perhaps most importantly, it has been brought to many of your Supervisors’ attention that certain conflicts of interest may exist for you as you assumed your new role. I’m sure you’ve hired a few people in your life, and yes, upon checking your references I have heard that you’ve fired some people too. You, then should be no stranger to what happens when an employee leaves a company, which we understand is standard in the private sector.
Even though we here are not in the private sector here, the principle is similar: when you leave one job and start another one, especially one in which you are privy to sensitive information, trade secrets, or other confidential items, it’s incumbent on you to make a clean break with the old and a clean start with the new. You’re a company man, aren’t you? You know the meaning of loyalty to the organization? Then I’m sure we don’t have to belabor this point. And yet…I understand this separation hasn’t been properly done, and Donald, I have to be honest, it really makes me question your loyalty to our organization here.
Finally, and please forgive me if I’m being preemptive here, but Donald, please: regardless of what you did in the past, there will be no putting your name on the sides of organization buildings in big gaudy gold letters.
With these initial points of feedback out of the way, let’s get down to why I called you in today. I, and all your other Supervisors, need you to know three things. Please give me your full, undivided attention, because I hate repeating myself:
ONE: We do not work for you. You work for us. All of us.
I can imagine that’s not how you are used to doing things. I know you’re used to making decisions more or less on your own, and having everyone else tell you how great of a decision that was, and that of course they’ll happily help you with it.
That’s not how it works around here.
We brought you on board (some of us more reluctantly than others) so you can work for us, not the other way around. And that means all of us. Me, that college student in Texas who just found out she is in deep debt, that homeless vet down on Fourth street, the aging farmer out there in Kansas, the sex worker in Queens — no, not that one, but yes, her too — the family of five in Idaho whose dad can’t afford his medical bills, the Navajo kid from Shiprock who enlisted and is out in the Pacific on that aircraft carrier, the taxi driver who moved here from Pakistan, that nice Black teenager in Houston who got caught up with the wrong crowd and is in the joint for a couple years, that guy and his husband in Provincetown, that nine year old girl with the missing tooth who moved here from El Salvador to be with her auntie, the scholar-athlete at that school in Alabama who dreams of making it big, that mom outside St. Louis whose son was just shot and killed. Or was that Baltimore? I forget. But yes, her too. You work for us. All of us. You are answerable and accountable to all of your Supervisors, not just the ones who wanted to bring you aboard. We are watching, and believe me when I say that some of my colleagues are a hair more upset about your performance so far than I am.
TWO: I advise you to revisit our Core Values, and adjust your approach to your new job accordingly.
This organization, the Federal Government of the United States, is quite different from your last company. It’s not just that we are an older and more established outfit over here, and that our facilities, and yes — some aspects of our internal culture — are a bit antiquated. It’s that we’re really setting out to do something fundamentally different as an organization.
In your last job, you were probably very concerned with competition, market share, winners and losers, and the like. Donald, you’ll be relieved to know that none of that applies here! You are no longer in a sales job, the pressure is off! Unlike the private sector, the mission of the Federal Government of the United States is not to beat competition, but — and here i’ll borrow directly from a couple of our company handbooks — to provide “liberty and justice for all,” and to “promote the general welfare,” among other things. Now, Donald, we are really looking to you in your current role to see to it that these core values are upheld and acted upon. And we take this seriously. Here at the Federal Government of the United States, this is our product and our service. This is what we make and provide. But, If you’re not able to ensure that the most foundational product of the Federal Government of the United States is of the highest quality, then I’m sure you can expect more of these little meetings in your future.
I know it’s tempting to try to find an opponent and joust a bit, and yes, there are other organizations out there in the world like us (although you’ll agree that none of them are quite like us!), but Donald, I wish you could have had the chance to check in with those recently departed employees in the State Department, or some of the good folks in Intelligence before you apparently burned that bridge. They’ve been around here a bit longer than you, and they’ll tell you the deal: it’s all connected. We’re all connected. Those other governments, they aren’t competitors unless you make them believe it’s true. Believe me, Donald, it’s easier to just avoid that altogether. And it’s highly preferable to all our bottom lines to avoid it without the use of force.
Furthermore, and I really want you to listen up here, we’re really concerned that some of the things our founding team put in place are not being respected. Other divisions of management have gotten word from the media that you’re not granting them their longstanding rights. Other supervisors are growing concerned about their right to religious practice, and yet others are very intent on ensuring that their freedom of speech can continue to be enjoyed, as it has been for almost 250 years. I know that sometimes our founding team may seem out of touch or no longer relevant, but I assure you: everyone at the Federal Government of the United States takes our founding team’s work very seriously.
If you want, we can arrange things with the Department of Education to get you some continuing on-the-job training to improve your understanding of our organization’s Core Values. Just say the word and we’ll make it happen. But this has to come from you.
THREE: Stop Lying.
We talked earlier about your conduct and how it has reflected poorly on the organization. But Donald, we absolutely can not have you saying things that are not true. This isn’t just about our image, although I’m sure you’ll agree that image matters a lot. There’s a lot more at stake.
Let me let you in on a dirty little secret, and I say this to you in confidence: some of your Supervisors are asleep at the wheel. You’ve probably come to suspect this. Truth is, they don’t know better than to trust whatever comes out of some of their highest profile employees’ mouths. We’re working on it, but Donald, I can’t have you take advantage of their ignorance. It slows everything down, it throws the organization out of whack, it costs us hundreds of billions annually, and quite simply, it’s not a decent thing to do.
I hate to end this little chat on such a harsh note, but on this one, I’m not asking. I’m telling you: stop lying. If you don’t know what you are talking about, don’t say anything. If you need some support as you figure out your roles and responsibilities, I’m sure that the other Supervisors and I can come up with some money to get you some professional coaching. In fact, I think we already have. I hope you’re not blowing it on something frivolous.
Thanks for coming in to see me today, Donald. I hope you’ve really taken what we’ve talked about here to heart, and I really hope to not have any more of these little chats with you. But if I have to, then, well, I suppose I can take some time out of my schedule for you again. I need to know you are making progress here, for the good of the organization. This keeps me up at night, you know?
And, Donald, one last thing: it’s come to my attention from our guys in Accounts Receivable that you currently carry a fairly large balance with our organization. We’ll need to see the paperwork on that. And please pay up.