WATCH: Former Chief of Staff for Obama talks Trump administration, Democrats, liberal arts education

One former White House chief of staff has some advice for the current man in the job: Communication is key for a smooth-running administration.

Denis McDonough, who served under former President Barack Obama, said Gen. John Kelly needed to act like the “team captain” in the White House.

“He’s got to make sure that both everybody understands the play, understands that the team is much more important than the individual players and that there’s real connectivity with the head coach– and that’s the president,” McDonough said.

McDonough pointed to the latest omnibus bill as evidence of coordination issues. Although White House officials helped negotiate the bill, President Donald Trump reportedly then told congressional leaders he did not like it.

McDonough added that it’s on Kelly to fix the communication trouble.

“It is clear that there are some problems and I hope he gets on top of them,” McDonough said.

As for members of his own party, McDonough said Democrats need to stick to who they are and their core message if they want to win in November.

“They should stand up for what Democrats stand for: Fair opportunity for people, reasonable health care costs, educational opportunities for all families,” McDonough said. “If we get back to that common, basic core message for Democrats I think they’ll do just fine– especially in light of all the trouble the president is having.”

As for Obama, McDonough said it’s likely we’ll see him back on the campaign trail this fall.

“I think you’re going to see the impact of Barack Obama for years to come,” McDonough said. “These guys don’t relax a lot.”

For more on McDonough’s thoughts on the Trump administration’s relationship with Congress and on the progressive vs. traditional split of his own party watch the full interview below: