News broke yesterday that Ivanka Trump is shutting down her fashion line. Awwwwww. Hard to feel bad for the girl, especially after all the reports of her abusing her position to influence Chinese tariffs in her favour.
Most reports cited the shutdown as a result of either:
1) Success from the organized efforts like Grab Your Wallet to boycott the products because of the obvious conflicts of interest
2) Massively slumping sales in all major retailers
3) Her distancing herself from the brand when she IS the brand.
To me, a more likely reason is that in the middle of the global trade war her father has started, the fact that none of her products are actually Made in America is – how shall I say it – hypocritical. Her father ran, won on, and is ramping up his “America Only” platform, which would make it hard (even for him) to explain why his daughter manufactures all of her products overseas. This was a disaster waiting to erupt. She was smart enough to shut down before it did.
Ivanka was violating the most basic tenet of leadership to me: Walk your talk. A leader who doesn’t will fail, every time. You want to be a special advisor to the president, then you better walk his talk. You want to be a C Suite leader, you better walk the company talk.
Remember the old adage so often used by parents: “Do as I say, not as I do”. It doesn’t work in a social media driven world. Whatever we say AND whatever we do is all out there for everyone to video, post, ingest, ruminate on, and, (sadly), comment upon.
Ivanka was smart enough to get out before it blew up in her face. I suggest that a better path is to consciously walk your talk, whatever that talk may be.