5 Strategies For Developing Leadership And Building Trust
Trust in the workplace, trust in leadership and connecting with others were the key phrases I found in a recent search for the best selling business books. Perhaps it is a sign of the times. A lack of leadership and trustworthiness in the workplace appears to be the norm.
Leadership is something everyone in the workplace can practice-not just CEOs and business owners. Communicating trustworthiness starts with honest intention and self-awareness. Additionally, you cannot be an effective communicator or leader if you do not provoke trust in others.
Here are 5 strategies for developing leadership and establishing trust:
1. Tell the truth. Easy to say-difficult to practice. Yet truth is what your customers, co-workers, employees, shareholders and vendors want from you. If a product is going to be delivered late, if a report is not completed, if quality is a problem, if earnings are down tell the truth about it. Most people CAN handle the truth. And, it prompts others to be honest. Truth requires no managing or memorization. Tell the truth-it’s easier.
2. Take action. Leadership means evaluating the available information and moving forward. The best leaders make difficult and timely decisions with about 70-80% of the information. You may never get all the details and waiting to act may result in tragedy. Evaluate and be proactive.
3. Do what you say you are going to do. Okay, this may be a combination of the first two strategies but it bears its own heading. Both actions and inactions influence others. If you promise to return a call, handle a matter, or show up on time-follow through.
4. Be consistent. Leadership requires consistency in behavior, mood and communication both at home and at work. Nothing kills trust like incongruence between what you do and say to one person and what you do and say to another.
5. Model what you expect from others. Don’t ask others to do something you wouldn’t do. Trust is developed when you live to ethics.
Communicating leadership requires an inner confidence and an outer personality that can convey that confidence to others both verbally and non-verbally. Many leaders possess the self-confidence to perform tasks and reach goals but lack the ability to connect with people. Trustworthiness is earned through communication not just results.