Several years ago, I worked with a team who pretty much had it figured out in terms of systems management, presentation skills, technology, and current supportive science in their practice. And yet… they didn’t work. The team itself was disconnected, cynical, and unsupportive. It was a group of lone rangers who did their individual jobs but made no effort to help each other and took no pleasure or pride in their group effort. It took me less than an hour of short discussions with a few of them to know exactly what was missing: Trust.
As there always are, there were clues:
- People promised a lot of things but rarely followed through.
- People were more concerned about their own bonuses, vacation schedules, whether their particular job was completed or what time they could leave each day than they were about anyone else’s experience.
- Two of them had been caught lying about something and were simply not honest.
Most did not confess to making a mistake, misstep, or forgotten obligation immediately, if at all.
- They assumed the worst of one another and maintained a ton of limiting beliefs, but no one had really ever talked about their feelings or ideas with anyone else to check the validity of their assumptions or communicate their needs.
- And it wasn’t just the team that lacked trust. Patients seemed reticent to pull the trigger on discretionary or expensive services because while the team used all the right “techniques,” there was an underlying feeling of being over sold, pressured or manipulated that resulted in clients pulling back and taking low levels of risk.
The resulting spirit of the place was difficult for me to watch – painful, really – because we miss out on so much when we operate in an environment of low trust and little faith. The net result is ultimately a lack of hope, and that’s one of the worst environments that I can imagine to spend such an enormous part of our life.
So, what does it take to build trust among any group of people? Pretty much the opposite of what I just described:
- Keep your promises. Try as hard as you can to do what you say you will do. Be careful what you promise… so that you can most always deliver.
- Own it when you don’t. Even when we are well-intentioned, all of us will have moments where we can’t deliver as we had hoped or thought we could. Things happen and we are all human. The best response is to quickly come clean, apologize, resist making too many excuses, and simply recommit to a new plan that you can deliver.
- Care about others. People can sense someone who consistently cares more about themselves than others… No matter what they actually say. People trust those who consistently consider others and regularly demonstrate that other people’s goals, needs, and desires matter at least as much as their own, if not more sometimes.
- Tell the truth.Trust is something that is built day by day, interaction by interaction… over time. And it can be broken in single moment.
- Sell without selling out. Never cross the line of negotiating your core beliefs and guiding values for things like a bigger bonus, winning the competition, or scoring the goal. It won’t be as sweet or as long-lasting as selling your ideas or services ethically and honestly.
- Communicate. People can’t read your mind or your heart. And we usually get it wrong when we make assumptions about others. Be courageous and learn and practice the art of communicating with your teammates about what you’re thinking and feeling as well as the gift of listening as much as you talk. Seek to understand at least as much as you seek to be understood.
- Be generous. Pitch in… because of the gift it is for others as well as the gift it is to you. Don’t measure your contribution against what others are doing. Leaders go first. Do wait and match. Contribute and lead.
This week, talk as a team about how you can elevate trust in your practice and even within your own family. High levels of trust and faith build spirited teams, communities and families filled with hope and a sense of security. Definitely worth the effort!
Our inaugural Workshop was so well received,
we’ve scheduled 3 more sessions for 2017!!
A lion cub’s life depends on how the Lioness helps them quickly become independent – just like employees depend on us to teach the skills they need to be successful.”
What can we learn from the Lioness’ approach?
It’s a jungle out there!
Whether you manage 2 people or 200, join Katherine Eitel Belt, the Unscripted Communication Expert, as she takes us through the jungle of effective leadership, management, and training skills and demonstrates how adult learners make real and lasting change. She’ll share lessons on coaching teams that will forever impact the way you teach important information and the way you create consistency and accountability to ignite employees’ ultimate potential. Click here for more information.
Practice Administrators, Office Managers,
Team Leaders, and Trainers!
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Please note: New dates!
April 5-6, 2017
July 12-13, 2017
November 2-3, 2017
San Diego, CA
Early Bird: $1200
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“A relationship without trust is like a car without gas.
You can stay in it all you want but it won’t go anywhere.”
~ Michael J. Herbert