Steve Polo

“In God we trust, all others pay cash” – sign in local service station

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

Lately, another important concept has been on my mind. Recent international events have brought to mind how one of the most basic human concepts seems to have gone missing. I’m talking about trust.

Without trust, the conditions of life and business become unworkable. Trust separates the valuable and dependable from the “look out for number ones” and the small-minded. I have enlisted the views of Thomas Stewart, the author of Intellectual Capital and the Wealth of Organizations, to help me outline how we can recapture this important component in our lives and business.

Often in the business world and the world of nations, hierarchy is a substitute for trust. When a business develops trust within its organization, fewer rules are required, and fewer rules means more initiative! Fewer rules are needed when people are trusted to do their jobs. Fewer rules are required when teams trust each other to complete their tasks, and fewer rules are required when people trust the vision and mission of their companies.

Businesses that build trust inside and outside of their organizations are better places to work and they work better.

According to Stewart, trust has five components (the 5 c’s):

  1. Competence: when people do their jobs well, trust builds
  2. Community: when people work together for common goals,  trust builds
  3. Communication: when people talk honestly with one another about their projects and expectations, trust builds
  4. Commitment: when people make commitments to themselves, their colleagues and their clients, trust builds
  5. Cupidity (what he really means is money, but money doesn’t start with a  – maybe cash would be good!): when people realize the value of their work, trust builds.

So when shareholders, clients or prospective employees look at your company, do they see trust?

When you build trust, you’ll build a better business and maybe even a better world.

Trust me!

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