A Trusted Brand Means a Trusted Leader
An excellent book that isn’t afraid to point out of the obvious is The Speed of Trust by Stephen Covey. He provides excellent tips and examples for business leaders on how to manage trust in order to build a team, reduce costs, and move a company to the next level. Why is trust so important?
Trusting people is a basic first step to running a business and maintaining clients. Yet it is hardly ever reviewed or talked about in everyday discussions or training. Just think about it. The more trust within a company or organization, the faster it can get things done (lower costs) and move the bottom line (grow).
The Speed of Trust book divides trust into four core components: integrity, intent, capability, and results.
While the four core components seem simple, it digs further down into each category. The first two (integrity and intent) define a person’s character. The last two (capability and result) define competence. Then it takes you step by step and walks you through how to measure your trust and review the personal circle around you.
The VB Entrepreneur does a great job of explaining the four cores.
Integrity. Without integrity you have no foundation on which to place trust. Covey defines integrity as being honest, telling the truth, and leaving the correct impression. Beyond honesty, integrity requires three things:
◾Congruence: Behavior consistent with your values inspires trust.
◾Humility: What is right has to be more important than being right.
◾Courage: When the right action is hard, integrity requires courage.
Intent. The author defines intent as plan or purpose, and breaks it into three components:
◾Motive: This is the “why” of intent. The most motive trust-inspiring motive is one that shows genuine care for your employees or customers. If your motive doesn’t have this, then be prepared to pay a “trust tax.”
◾Agenda: What do you intend to do based on your motive? The agenda that inspires the greatest trust is mutually beneficial.
◾Behavior: This is the actual action that results from the motive and agenda. The behavior that inspires the greatest trust is acting in the best interests of others.
Capability. Do you have the ability to accomplish the required task? This is critical, since you won’t deliver without it. The author breaks down capability into four key parts: talent, attitude, knowledge, and style. The more these suit the needs of the situation, the higher the competence.
Results. The most powerful and simplest test for trust is results — not just what the results were, but how they were accomplished.
Franklin Covey sums it up best, “Trust-related problems like redundancy, bureaucracy, fraud, and turnover put the skids on productivity, divert resources, squander opportunities, and chip away at a company’s brand.”
How does trust relate to marketing? As any good marketer, the leaders of a brand build trust in the workplace and with consumers. Trust is a company’s strategic advantage—accelerating growth, enhancing innovation, improving collaboration and execution, and increasing brand equity.