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A Matter of Trust

Blog post by The Supine Professor

Before we begin this week’s blog, let me just make it clear that the title is intentional—I’m a huge Billy Joel fan! Now, while Mr Joel was talking about love, the truth of his words applies to any relationship, and is especially true at work. The mechanisms of trust are based on multiple factors: genuineness, transparency, honesty, reliability, and respect. These 5 areas are interconnected, and inextricably linked; they form the bedrock on which trust sits. One can only trust someone who can be believed. We can never place trust until we believe. What does this mean? Well, if you do not believe what someone says it is probably because there has been a breach of the 5-point trust mechanism. Trust for a manager or leader is everything: lose it and every task becomes harder to attain and every objective becomes harder to reach. Leading without having people follow means that you are not a leader—you will never be more than a manager. A compliance king or queen, or an aspirational auditor. Leaders understand the power of trust in an organisation and filter through the 5-point mechanism seamlessly before making decisions or performing actions. I know what you’re thinking: doesn’t this slow the whole process down? What if an important decision needs to be made and there is no time? This idea of there being no time is a myth. The myth has been developed over many years into a reality for the ill-informed; for the individuals who think that tomorrow will be too late; for the panic stricken, who are eager to please but not confident enough to lead. I’m here to dispel this myth right now--there is always time! In fact, taking that time will save you a lot of that commodity in the future and a lot of money too. Bad decisions are made in haste and the best decisions are made with forethought. The expert exponents of the 5-point trust mechanism are so used to applying the system, so in tune with their internal ethics and values, and so confident in their own abilities and common sense, that they don’t spend much time running through the 5 points at all. Shortcuts and attempting quick fixes are the antithesis of the system: employees will feel disrespected that you did not feel the need to consult, or did not fully consider the ramifications of your decision and its impact on them; employees will feel that because you did not consult that you might have another agenda, not be transparent, and that your goals do not align with theirs; if you continue in this vain you will no longer be reliable and will then be labelled as dishonest, especially if you try to further justify your position, or play a double role. We can help apply simple systems into working environments and incorporate effective coaching to make sure that trust flourishes and efficiency follows. Never forget that when it’s time to build your organisation, it’s also a matter of trust! A Matter of Trust

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