Trust and Risk

“You got to have a little faith in people.” – Murielle Hemingway, “Manhattan”

I have witnessed the implosion of a client’s company – primarily due to the lack of trust that the CEO evidenced toward the intelligent people who worked for him. They intuitively sensed his narcissism and responded with resentment and cynicism in the face of his insincerity. The lack of shared values and coherence in this company’s culture subsequently manifest itself in the defection of major clients. All this taking place in a company that industry observers considered to be in the right place at the right time.

Trust is the glue that holds everything together. It trumps intelligence. There are lots of intelligent people on the planet in every relationship, marriage, organization and country. Regardless,when we fail to trust each other, then relationships, marriages, organizations and countries fall apart. Building trust with others requires that we take risks, drop defenses and trust ourselves, share our mutual vulnerability. This is not easy for management to do. It requires that we redefine power, drop assumptions, make an effort, concentrate, learn new skills and practice them every day.

We mortals have a responsibility to give more of ourselves, go beyond our static comfort zones, our armored individuality and competitive spirit. Trust is part of our DNA for survival. We cannot make it through the stress of life and work without interrelationship. There are no successful relationships or organizations without trust.

I work with organizations to build this kind of trust and develop the disciplines necessary to sustain it.


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