Trust is like gold in leadership. Without it a leader will fail to build a healthy following. Change will be difficult to implement. Retention and recruitment of leaders becomes near impossible.
Developing trust takes time. It is seldom granted with position or title. Most people have been injured in relationships which keeps them from trusting blindly or quickly.
Three years into my current position, I recognize with many in the church I pastor I’m still developing levels of trust.
If any leader wants to be successful, much will be determined by the level of trust he or she can attain. One goal of every leader, therefore, should be trust development.
How do we do this?
Here are 5 suggestions for developing trust as a leader:
Compassion. Trusted leaders have shown people by experience they care for others — not just in lip service, but with genuine heartfelt compassion. Trusted leaders love people. Seeing others succeed around them is a high and celebrated value.
Competence. Trusted leaders have knowledge in a subject matter, and, when they don’t know something, a willingness to yield to those who know more. They aren’t always second guessing themselves or the team. They believe in themselves, in God’s ability to work through them, and in the people with whom they surround themselves.
Consistent. There is an expected approach or methodology upon which people can depend upon with a trusted leader. They have a consistency in character so, whether through good and bad times, the integrity of the leader is above reproach.
Communication. Trusted leaders have a process, which shares in transparency and full disclosure to the teams they lead. You don’t have to continually guess what they are thinking, what they are dreaming, or what’s next on their planning agenda. They include others in the decision-making process and keep them informed along the way.
Courage. Trusted leaders aren’t sitting still while the world passes them. They make decisions. Even hard decisions. They are willing to lead their team into the unknown while they hold their position boldly in front — even willing to take “arrows” for the team when needed.
Those are a few of my suggestions. Let’s be trusted leaders. Let’s get things done.