Posts Tagged ‘Trust’

Confidence is a 2-way Street

Wednesday, October 10th, 2012

Many people will tell you that one needs confidence to be a successful manager or leader. That’s where the problem starts.

Many confident managers and leaders answer most, if not all questions with a statement. Even when they don’t know the real answer. Instead of admitting they don’t know the answer, they fake it. I would suggest those managers or leaders are either over-confident or not confident enough.

Confidence means having the confidence to admit one doesn’t have all the answers. By the very definition of the title manager or leader, one can’t have all the answers. One can’t know all the details and still have the bigger picture view that a manager or leader requires.

An indication of confidence is the willingness to admit not knowing all the answers, and being okay with asking questions. Asking those questions will lead to more knowledge, leading to more confidence, providing you with the confidence to admit to not knowing all the answers and asking more questions. And on and on…

When was the last time you admitted to not knowing the answer to a question? A funny thing happens when you admit you don’t have all the answers: others trust you more. They trust that you’ll tell the truth, even if it means looking less knowledgeable.

Trust and Team Performance

Thursday, April 10th, 2008

When it comes to trust, there seems to be two kinds of people in the world. Some people start off by not trusting others until they have earned their trust. Other people begin by trusting people until they do something to cause that trust to be eroded. Which approach do you take?

When it comes to trust, there seems to be two kinds of people in the world. Some people start off by not trusting others until they have earned their trust. Other people begin by trusting people until they do something to cause that trust to be eroded.

Which approach do you take with people? This matters because it can have a huge impact on your performance, the performance of people you work with, and the teams you’re a part of.

The problem with the “I don’t trust you until you earn my trust” philosophy is this: It’s hard to trust someone who doesn’t trust you. So, until you trust me, I have a hard time trusting you; until I trust you, you have a hard time trusting me. It’s a catch-22 kind of thing, and one that does not lead to a great collaborative or team performance.

To be trusted, you need trust – you need to trust the other person. And that means going with the “I trust you until you prove that I shouldn’t” approach. Sure, every now and then someone may take advantage of your trust, but in the long run I’m sure you’ll be further ahead. If you begin by trusting people, you can quickly develop a mutual trust, a better working relationship, and, therefore, you will both perform better. If you start off by distrusting people, you may not be hurt by someone taking advantage of your trust. But, in the time it takes for both of you to develop mutual trust, you will have missed out on performing at your best for a significant period of time.

When I think about it, respect is much the same. To be respected, you have to give respect. Have you ever noticed how difficult it is to respect someone if they don’t respect you? Or, perhaps you’ve never had anyone disrespect you – so you’ll have to take my word for it!!!

To get anything, you first have to give. I know this may sound a little too Pollyanna-ish to be effective in the business world, or the sporting world, or whatever world you’re performing in, but it’s true. To be respected or trusted, you need to respect or trust. Without respect and trust, no team is ever going to perform well.