Maria Matarelli Blogs

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Acceleration Through Trust

Trust. It’s the basis of so much, yet it can be absent in many of our interactions without us even realizing it.

Stephen Covey talks about the “Speed of trust” and how trust affects speed and cost; as trust decreases, speed decreases and cost increases (and vice versa). This makes alot of sense when you stop and think about it. However, when trust is present and things are going smoothly, not a lot of thought may be given to it, while on the other hand, when things aren’t going well, even though the root cause can be traced back to the absence of trust, it doesn't always raise to the surface.

When trust isn't present, think about how much longer it takes to get things done. What’s at the source of distrust – is it fear? What are we afraid of? Imagine if you stopped the cycle by demonstrating vulnerability and trust toward others, even when you haven’t gotten it back. Imagine the acceleration you would see.

Lets take a look at the behavior of leaders in organizations and the idea of encouraging a more masterly management style than a directive approach. It can be hard to let go sometimes; difficult to fight the urge to micromanage. It essentially comes down to ‘do you trust your people’. Setting guidelines and providing space can allow people to be more innovative and can remove bottlenecks while allowing the opportunity for them to think creatively and utilize their expertise.

Lets look at teams next. Imagine how much more effectively a team could work together if they really trust each other and if when problems arise, the environment were safe enough that they feel they can speak up and they trust that their feedback will not be met with defensiveness and other team members trust that the feedback is coming from a good place with the intent to better the team.

Aligned values and clear expectations can set a base for trust, but we need to demonstrate trust in how we interact with others. Then we can really begin to accelerate.