Trust is the first sign of courage

Today I’d like to step a little outside the Social Media world. I feel the need to talk about something so important and yet still so underestimated in work place: trust.

Lack of trust could damage way more than saving for possible mistakes.

I love living in a place where trust is the key word. In fact I truly believe that Germany has established its culture and way of living in trusting each other. Of course if you trust someone it’s because the other person,thing or institution had never let you down. For example why do we think that “Chinese” product are not reliable? Probably because they have failed our expectations many times in the past and thus they started the de-Trustring process. Of course once the perception is created, we well know there is nothing you can do about it. Same thing for the people, people who don’t believe in “politics” (and now they’re more and more) it is because they think politicians had have never maintained what they had promised. Again, failing in satisfying expectations is the problem.

So, while I understand loosing trust when the other person/thing failed in reaching your requirements, what does it make people not giving trust in advanced? If don’t know you, but I have experiences in many different work environments simple lack of trust in advanced with no apparent reasons. And let me tell you, such behavior is causing actually more problems than the ones it should prevent. How does a person feel if has not been trusted?

  • Weak, because he/she knows he has to ask for everything and if he/she makes the wrong choices, those choices are just the prove that he is not reliable. But of course if you never chose, you never learn. And we know that unfortunately mistaking is part of the learning process.
  • Small, yes. You feel like a child that needs to ask the permit to her mother to go to the park and eat an ice-cream.
  •  Insecure, the power of decision gives you the strength to stand up for your thoughts and fight for your opinion. If you know you don’t have any decision-making power, you of course will not fight for anything, even when you are right and you could overcome someone else mistake.
  • Demotivated. You act like a robot that only executes, with no thinking. It is of course it’s boring and workaday. At the end you just give up, work only on minimum required and the biggest aspiration is to go home earlier. Until you quick or you get hospitalized for depression Syndrom.
  • Resigned – If you have been treated always like a monkey, would you then become a pro-active and leading person only when and where the company need it? I doubt it. You can not expect anyone that has not been encouraged to be all of the sudden a racehorse.

It is not a case that also Forbes wrote about it.This sentence from the article summarize perfectly the concept:

The key success factor becomes the ability to persuade someone over whom you have no power to collaborate with you in pursuit of a common Mission.

To end, not giving trust to the team will lead to unhappy, discouraged and demoralized people. Ones that you don’t want to work with. So, how should we give trust to your co-employers without risking too much on their wrong choices?

  1. Make them doing frequent small decisions. Such decisions that would not hurt so much but at the same time make the person satisfy to be able to take it. For example ask your Marketing colleguae to decide a Layout/Design.
  2. Providing support whenever he asks for it but not imposing your voice. Sometimes people only need to talk with someone to understand better what they have to do. That’s why listening is more imporant in those moments.
  3. Assuming the responsability of their mistakes. If we trust, we know they can fail. But it is our Job believing in them and encouraging them, even if they make mistakes. So they can feel free to try on things and making decisions.
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