Rory Mcilroy plays golf with the POTUS and is harshly criticized by Trump opposition for doing so. Several members of the World Series Chicago Cubs are invited to the White House but refuse to go stating that they do not agree with the President's political beliefs. Protests - internal and external - occur when the Radio City Rockettes are scheduled to perform at the presidential inauguration. Jennifer Holliday pulls out of singing at an inauguration ball due to push back from anti-Trump groups. Are professionals who receive invitations from the POTUS between the proverbial rock and a hard place?

How powerful is the Trump / POTUS effect?

Admitting the Trump / POTUS effect exists

Professionals may or may not have been in such uncomfortable circumstances in the past. However, it is so pronounced in today's world - due to the ever present social media and other traditional and non-traditional new sources - that the slightest activity becomes significant and extensive fodder for the public. Rory McIlroy is one of the world's greatest and most famous PGA golfers. February 2017 he was asked to play golf with President Trump. Less than a few hours past the time he agreed to play, critics and protesters came out of the woodwork.

McIlroy acknowledged that he wanted to put all differences aside and play a simple round of golf.

No doubt he had a curiosity about the office of the POTUS and was in just as much awe regarding an invitation to be with the leader of the free world as anyone else might be. But because of the divisive nature of the presidential election and the continued divided beliefs throughout the United States, McIlroy became a target for those who disagree with the Trump presidency.

Nothing to do with golf. Call it protesting. Call it the role of the opposition. Or call it powerful behavior on the part of the party who lost the election. Whatever it is called, it is clear that there is a new effect when combining Donald J. Trump with the office of the POTUS.

Managing the impact

In running for elected office at such a high level, the President is aware of the unintended costs that come along with his service.

Trump knows how it changes both his professional life and his personal life, and he understands the day-to-day security risks. It is part of the presidential role and responsibility. With the new Trump / POTUS effect, individuals like McIlroy will now have to understand that similar impacts - both Positive And Negative - will be a mark of accepting invitations with this president. Snipers in the trees lining the golf course and a tee box full of Secret Service agents are just the tip of the iceberg now.

Today's invitations for individuals like McIlroy will also include positive and negative career judgements not just about the inviter, but about the invitee. Individuals like McIlroy will have to determine whether the negative career consequences are worth the time spent with the President of the United States.