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The Power of Trust

Jun 4, 2012
By Craig Schloneger

Categories: Leadership & Organizational Development

The Power of Trust

June 4, 2012

The Power of Trust by Craig Schloneger

When you experience a transition in life, you realize the importance of past relationships and how they have influenced and shaped your professional and personal life.

As many of you are aware, I have recently made a transition from CEO of Ten Thousand Villages to Partner and Senior Consultant at North Group.  Both organizations have impressed me with their values of integrity, accountability, and an amazing amount of trust.

At Ten Thousand Villages this trust is readily apparent in business dealings with artisan groups.  This trust makes possible, and increases success for, an incredibly difficult and cumbersome system of importing hand-crafted products from economically impoverished people.  Artisan groups receive full payment for products at the time they are ready to ship.  The monetary transaction is finalized before possession, inspection or quality control has been completed.

The system works with few problems because the relational transaction (or trust) continues long after payment has been made.  Ten Thousand Villages and artisan groups value the long-term relationship with each other and therefore continue trusting that both sides will hold up their end of the relationship.

This is the essence of what Stephen M. R. Covey writes about in his book, The Speed of Trust.  Covey states:

There is one thing that is common to every individual, relationship, team, family, organization, nation, economy, and civilization throughout the world – one thing which, if removed, will destroy the most powerful government, the most successful business, the most thriving economy, the most influential leadership, the greatest friendship, the strongest character, the deepest love.

You guessed it – this one thing is trust!

I am fortunate to have left one great organization and join another where trust is at the core of relationships and embedded in the culture.  As leaders we have the opportunity to achieve better results, more efficient decision-making and greater organizational success by simply demonstrating and extending trust to others.  I encourage you to take the risk to trust those around you.

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