Trust as a catalyst for your success

"Why don't you give Müller a call? He'll do it for you this week at a really good price." And the tradesman has already gained a new customer, simply through the recommendation of an existing customer. The existing customer has had a good experience with the tradesman: "This is someone who keeps his promises. He's guaranteed not to rip you off!" "Well, if you say so!" The new customer attaches great importance to the opinion of his acquaintance because he trusts his judgment. He immediately picks up the phone and calls the tradesman. And everyone saves time: the new customer doesn't have to spend a long time looking for a suitable tradesman and the tradesman doesn't have to spend time canvassing.

All of this is possible because we trust people. Trust is the fundamental pillar of interpersonal relationships. In leadership, in cooperation, in customer contact. Trust creates speed. Where there is trust, work goes faster, better results are achieved in less time. As effective as trust is, building trust is also complex.

A symbiosis of expertise and reliability

Trust consists of four levels: I really like the metaphor of a tree here. The root of trust is integrity. You are perceived by others as having integrity if you keep your word and deliver what you promise. The trunk stands for your intention. What promises do you make? What do you want to achieve? The branches and leaves lead away from the trunk: What skills do you have? The fruits are ultimately your results.

It is important that you cover the entire tree, all four levels, and consider both the social and results-oriented components.

After all, what good are the best skills and results if you can't rely on an employee? If they simply don't show up at the office on some days and are happy to let important tasks fall by the wayside. And vice versa: what good is it if an employee has incredible integrity but ultimately fails to deliver results?

How trust and responsibility fuel each other

It is not only essential for cooperation that you trust your employees - trust also plays a decisive role in the other direction:

For example, if a manager has messed up the timing of a project, which now means a lot of stress and extra work for the whole team, it makes a big difference how much trust employees have in their boss. How much mutual appreciation there is in the company.

A mistake is much more likely to be forgiven if the team knows that the boss has acted with the best of intentions and that they can count on him at all times. They appreciate his competence and reliability. Summarize what you have learned and move on.

Otherwise, frustration is high, motivation drops and tension rises. The employee may not have the courage to express their anger or discuss the boss's mistake. An open conversation does not take place.

It is important for the further development of all of us - regardless of your status in the company - to accept open feedback. This means that every opinion is valued. That everyone is allowed to express their opinion. Of course, this also implies appreciation through precise praise and the celebration of successes and successful projects.

This creates a culture of trust in your company. An atmosphere in which not only mutual trust, but also trust in oneself, in one's own abilities, prevails, confidence is given, which in turn makes more personal responsibility possible. (You can find out more about this in my blog 2 about my principles)

Who would you like to appreciate today? Who would you like to praise? What success have you achieved today?

Torsten Osthus

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