Why I support Romney - leadership counts
The election of our next U.S. president presents us with a classic hiring decision where past performance is, in fact, a predictor of future results.
Having worked in the human capital and recruiting business for 40-plus years, I know that a track record of success trumps talk. In this election, it is essential that we have a president who can visualize and articulate practical solutions, identify a diverse team to do the work and then collaborate effectively to get the job done.
This presidential election is not about media-created issues. We do not care about birth certificates or about tax returns or about who built it, or about 1 percent, 47 percent or 99 percent, or about who pays for birth control pills, or about taxing some of you more and others less, or about attempts to divide our people by ethnicity or religion or income.
This election is about addressing our country’s major strategic problems. This election is about the critical need for proven leadership.
It is about electing the right person and about solving our debt crisis; it’s about demanding our federal government adopt some financial discipline; it’s about protecting our healthcare, social security and safety net for the young and old over the long haul; it’s about restoring our competitiveness by rationalizing the tax code; it’s about solving our education problems by supporting more charter schools and encouraging school choice; it’s about reducing big business’ and labor unions’ power and control over our legislatures; and it’s about solving our immigration issue fairly, judiciously and in a timely fashion.
We must demand leadership from our next president. We must require a track record of successful leadership. We want leadership that will consider and include the ideas, and encourage the support, of liberals, Democrats, conservatives, Republicans and Independents. We must insist on collaboration and inclusion with all parties.
What criteria do you use to select and elect a president? The same criteria you use when determining who to hire as an employee. You identify the one best candidate with a proven record of execution, not the charismatic communicator.
Who has the track record and pattern of success? Only one candidate has a track record of working in an organization with business sector issues and solving them: Romney at Bain Capital. Only one has worked with a nonprofit organization where there were issues of corruption and disorganization and solved them: Romney at the U.S. Winter Olympics. Only one has worked in government where he, through collaboration with a democratic legislature, solved significant public sector issues: and balanced state-wide fiscal issues and private sector unemployment: Romney while serving as Massachusetts governor.
Gov. Romney has a proven track record of identifying a problem, determining an effective solution and coalescing a talented management team to execute successfully, in every instance.
The challenges our president faces in the next term are complex and serious. We have a mess both inside the U.S. and globally. We need a problem-solver, not a motivational speaker.
Here are two examples of what we can learn from a person’s patterns and track record:
The San Francisco 49ers hired a coach two years ago who had been successful turning bad situations into great ones. Jim Harbaugh turned the San Diego State and Stanford college football programs into winners quickly. He did that again with the 49ers last year, and they appear to be on the way to the playoffs again in 2012. Past performance is a predictor of future results.
Elizabeth Taylor, the actress, married eight times. When at the altar, she vowed to be faithful and committed, “until death do us part.” Each of her many husbands wanted to believe her, did believe her, and took her at her word. But it is never what a person says, it is always what the person does that is the predictor of future events.
Harbaugh has fulfilled expectations because he had a track record of success. Ms. Taylor did not live up to her words, although she surely believed them every single time she was saying them. This November, we are faced with a classic hiring decision . Do not base your vote and your presidential decision on what a candidate says they will do. Do not base your decision on what the ads say or the media says. Look at the track records of both candidates – have they been successful or not? Have they kept their promises and commitments or not?
If you examine each candidate, you will see a clear and major difference between them. One candidate who has not made any significant progress solving our problems, nor collaborating with the Congress and our elected representatives to help solve our domestic and international problems in four years. The other candidate who has a proven and consistent track record of success in the private sector and governmental affairs. This man deserves our vote and the chance to reassert our world-leadership role. That man is Mitt Romney.
Gary Nelson is the now-retired founder of the Nelson Family of Companies and a leading philanthropist in the Sonoma Valley.