Last night’s election results were a big surprise to many – me included. Political strategist Steve Schmidt said that because trust in institutions (government, media, business, non-governmental organizations), both here in the U.S. and around the world, is at an all-time low, voters were seeking an alternative to the establishment/institutional candidate. It was the year of Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders. No matter how much the media (see list of untrustworthy institutions) told us the election was over, the voters said, “Not so fast.” It appears that when Americans were faced with the choice of staying the course or trying something new, Trump’s argument, “What do you have to lose by voting for me?” resonated with just enough people in enough states for him to win the election.
In what I regard as the most divisive political contest of my lifetime, we’re going to be challenged as never before to bring our country together. I can only hope that the collaborative tone Trump struck in his acceptance speech rings for the next four years. As I wrote in an earlier post, Collaboration Trumps Competition, we have our hands full and we will all have to play our part in healing our nation. My hope is that between now and January 20th, we can begin to see ourselves once again, not in terms defined by partisan politics, but as peers – as Americans – united in doing what’s best for our country and to serve as an example to the world in the years ahead. I look forward to touching on this subject during our Year of the Peer Podcast Series. Now that your vote was heard on behalf of your candidate, lend your voice to unite our country.