09/20/2012 01:01 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Why Is It So Difficult for People to Warm Up to Mitt Romney?

This question originally appeared on Quora.
By Brett Williams, Librarian, Skeptic, Geek

Romney's practice of leadership has been in two rigid, hierarchical worlds: the Mormon Church and the capital markets.

As a Mormon bishop and stake president, his experience of power was one in which he was rarely challenged or held accountable by the members of his congregation. Instead, he reported to and was held accountable by distant managers. There is no structural control at the ward level over the actions of a bishop or a stake president. They are often granted wide leeway within official church policy and are only removed early after a pattern of poor judgement is obvious to their superiors.

At Bain, Romney dictated the terms of acquisition and policy to other managers, often making decisions that affected thousands of ordinary people without ever meeting them. Romney is a capable manager. He is not a populist, and his skills do not lie with stirring up crowds.

While governor of Massachusetts, Romney's governance style was described as CEO-like and cold. He preferred to communicate with members of his own party and the leadership of the legislature, and he did not socialize with the House and Senate members.

In contrast, Obama has significant experience working directly with community activist groups. His experience has been with crafting messages and aiding in campaigns to influence public opinion.

In the field of appearing genuine in the national political eye, Bill Clinton is Michael Jordan. Obama is a promising first round draft pick. Romney is a 6'6" cello performance major. It's not that he's not in the same league ... he's not even playing the same game.


By Jonathan Brill, VP of Sales at a Software Start-Up

Mitt Romney has an unfortunate habit of alluding to his wealth and social network of CEO's and fellow rich and famous people. He acts a little bit like you'd expect someone to act if they just walked into couple hundred million of dollars and wanted to parade it tastelessly throughout their old neighborhood.

I think most people find it hard to connect with him because of the constant reminders of how different his life is than theirs.

Don't take my word for it. Watch some of the clips in that WP article and ask yourself this: if you were standing next to that guy at a party, wouldn't you want to walk away? That's annoying, right?

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