JS Tip 151: From the Leadership Workshops: Gaining Trust

Last week, in our Tip about leadership and trust, we promised to explore everyday practices in good leadership.

Bingo. Here we go.

We suggest four everyday practices to maintain trust:

Get out of the stupid office. A friend remembers a day thirty years ago when the CEO stopped by his desk and asked how he was. The CEO. Thirty years ago. You cannot lead from the corner office.   

Get to know your people. Where are they from? How are their families? What do they like about the company? What would they change? (And when you adopt their suggestions, give them credit: “This was Shirley’s idea.”)   

Keep your word. Never, ever lie. It’s that simple. If you’re asked a question you can’t answer, say, “I’m sorry, but I can’t answer that question.” Keep your promises. If circumstances change, explain what’s happened: “I promised to get you that book on process improvement. It’s on back order. I didn’t want you to think I’d forgotten about you.”   

Watch out for your people before you watch out for yourself. Eat last at the company picnic. (Better yet, serve at the company picnic.) Treat your people fairly.    

Your leadership and your credibility rest on your daily behavior. This is not rocket science.

Questions, comments, or arguments? Let us know. We love this stuff.