In our last newsletter we made the case for the importance of high levels of trust in the workplace. To refresh your memory and provide some different statistics, The Fortune 100 Best Companies to work for that showed high levels of trust out performed financially others that don’t have a culture of trust by 288%. Trust makes you better at every other competency for running and leading a business such as clear and efficient decision-making, clear expectations, reduced politics, high morale, and increased productivity. It reduces turnover, increases engagement and passion for the company and is an accelerator for leading change. To be trusted is the most compelling motivator, period. Trust is a game changer. It is a multiplier for performance and low trust can derail even the best of strategies.
Okay, so hopefully you are now asking yourself, well how do I build trust? Stephen M. R. Covey speaks of 5 Waves of Trust (Please note that this is ROI’s understanding of what was shared):
Wouldn’t it be wonderful if the primary purpose of every business was to create value and contribute to Society by promoting growth of those around us.
- Self – Do you trust yourself? Do you do the things you say you are going to do? Do you stand for the things you say are important and hold yourself to the same standard you may judge others by? It is all about credibility and integrity.
- Relationship – I love this quote from Stephen “You can’t talk your way out of the behavior that got you into the predicament in the first place.” Meaning, are you modeling the behavior you desire in your relationships, whether they be at work or personal? Are you making positive healthy relationships with your co-workers a priority?
- Organization – Is your organization in alignment with the Vision, Values and Purpose of the company as well as with the goals, roles and procedures? This effects decision-making.
- Market – What is your reputation? What are you known for and how do you know? In other words, what does your brand stand for?
- Society – What contribution does your company make to society either by what you are known for (product or service) or what you give to your community?
A perfect example of this and maybe you saw it on the news yesterday morning, is Richard Branson of Virgin Group is offering one year paid Parental leave to certain leaders and managers who fit the criteria to qualify for this opportunity. The reason he is doing this is he's personally benefited from being able to be there for his kids and wants to afford the same opportunity for others. The commentary by news reporters focused on how an opportunity similar to Branson's initiative would never happen in the states and the fact that even companies who had generous parental leave policies in the US, did not have employees taking advantage of them because they did not trust that this good intention would not come back to bite them in the, you know where. What this speaks to is the “Positional Power” many Corporate leaders take when focusing on rewarding accomplishments instead of who you are, what values you possess and the difference you make. What the news reporters acknowledged was what a smart move this was for Branson because not only does it build loyalty, passion, trust, and results within the walls of his company, it also raises the bar for his competition making it very hard to compete for top talent. Top Talent is what gives you your competitive edge. Even if technology runs your business, there are still people behind the technology. When interviewed, Richard Branson said that his philosophy has always been to grow people and businesses and to truly believe in trust and care about the people who are making your company great.
Wow, okay, so what are you waiting for? Not all of us have the resources to offer such a grandiose gesture as Richard Branson's but the good news is; he didn’t start that way. Here are little things you can do right now that can make a big difference in building trust and business results:
- Talk Straight – Say what you mean and mean what you say, but don’t say it mean.
- Consistency of Respect – How you treat one effects many. Get into the habit of speaking about people as if they are present. In other words, be loyal in their absence. This demonstrates integrity and builds credibility.
- Separate person from behavior when addressing issues.
- Be committed to continuous improvement and put your money where your mouth is. Promote growth and make a difference.
- Serve others and have integrity, meaning have the courage to do the right thing, even when tested and even if there is going to be a cost or consequence.
- Have character and competence and only promote into leadership positions those that demonstrate true caring and love for the people they work with and that are willing to serve others by looking out for the best interests of all.
This is how Herb Kelleher, the Founder of Southwest Airlines led and John Mackey of Whole Foods Markets and look at their success!
“Common sense is not common practice” -Stephen M.R. Covey
“True Leadership is about the Followers, not the Leaders” -John Maxwell
ROI believes in and provides a systematic approach for helping leaders to invest in people, ignite passion and inspire performance both efficiently and effectively. ROI is an authorized partner of Wiley Workplace Learning Solutions and a certified associate of Integro Leadership Institute.
Dana Riker Jackson, CEO
Riker Opportunity Institute, Inc.