In the July 5, 2010 Coach's
Corner we talked about the key elements
of regaining the trust of those we lead. Doing so is vitally important
to leaders for without trust there is rarely any leadership. After all,
how many of us want to follow a leader we don't trust?
Let's expand this notion a bit with the following additional elements
that leaders must pay close attention to as they regain the trust of
Step 1: Leaders and Managers, Know Thyself: It is said that organizations
don't build trust, managers do. Which is why the equally true aphorism
states that people join organizations and leave managers. Self assessment
is the hardest thing in the world to do well because we are so invested
in ourselves. So seek out more objective, outside feedback. Multi-rater
360 instruments can be an excellent development tool when used properly
and administered well (meaning the real work begins after the results
are in). Having a neutral facilitator interview your staff to seek feedback
works well too. The point is to get the feedback, process it (which can
be tough to handle if the feedback is harsh), and then implement a strategy
to act in good faith on the salient points from the feedback.
Step 2: Match behavior to intentions: The road to hell is paved with
good intentions. If you state your intentions to change things about
your leadership style based on this feedback, but your behaviors don't
match those intentions, you have just proven once again how untrustworthy
you are. Make no mistake about it: adapting your style to act in ways
that do not come naturally to you is a very challenging proposition.
Seek out and get the support you need to make this happen.
Step 3: Help employees see themselves in
the organization's future: First and foremost, employees want to know what is expected of them.
It is the leader's job to clearly define those expectations. And those
specific expectations need to be couched in the larger vision of the
department or company. Where do I fit into the bigger strategy? Answering
this question for employees creates value and meaning. And this notion
of where staff fit in the greater scheme of things must be repeated often
and with the passion the leader feels toward that larger vision. After
all, if you are not talking about that envisioned future, why would you
think your employees are? It is up to you to create and maintain context.
Step 4: Make a commitment to employee development-for
all employees: Let's let go of Employee of the Month programs and truly commit to employee
development as a mainstay of employee recognition. If people are our
most important asset, then developing them is crucial to keep them growing,
enhancing skill sets, grooming them for advancement, and letting them
know that they are so important that the organization is continually
investing in them.
All of these very visible steps can make a world of difference as your
build the trust of those you lead.
Provided Courtesy of:
Maxwell & Associates
1012 Embassy Row Way • Seabrook Island, SC 29455-6005 • Voice 843-768-2227 • Fax 843-768-2170 • Rich@MaxwellCoaching.com