Thirteen Behaviors that Build Trust in Relationships

Building trust is a process of modeling behavior shared vision and repeating messaging

Building trust is a process of modeling behavior shared vision and repeating messaging

What behaviors build trust in relationships?

Think about a time you were part of a really effective team that excelled at pulling together to achieve a shared outcome. What were the attributes that made it successful?

Research shows that teams who collaborate to attain a common end goal are usually high in trust. Success often relies on a group with a sense of shared values, vision and purpose. When all stakeholders are given opportunities to have input, they are inspired to build something together, so as change leaders, how do we work to create a culture of trust? Recently I read Stephen Covey’s book called; “The Speed of Trust,” which looks at trust from three perspectives.

  • Trust as an economic driver that boosts productivity and results. Emotional deposits and withdrawals as an example.
  • Trust as the #1 competency in leadership
  • Trust can be learned

So who is a high trust leader? It is a person with high credibility, solid interpersonal skills with the ability to cultivate trust in teams and throughout organizations and knows that trust is critical to productivity and cost. The four cornerstones below are key for leaders to establish trust.

  1. High Competence -This combines the education and experience we bring to the table
  2. Integrity (Character) – Consistent alignment of thoughts feelings and actions with values principles and goals
  3. Intent (Character) – Self-reflection that examines why we do the things we do
  4. Results (Competency) – Make us credible

13 Traits of Strong Trust Leaders

  1. Talk straight so everyone understands your point of view
  2. Demonstrate respect – how you treat the one has an effect on the many
  3. Create transparency (act with authenticity and no hidden agendas)
  4. Rights all wrongs – Demonstrate accountability and humility
  5. Show loyalty to every person – Credits others for success, always speaks of others as if they are present
  6. Deliver results  (vs activity)
  7. Continuous self-improvement and commitment to learning
  8. Confront reality with tact – acknowledge unspoken and confront the issue(s), not the person
  9. Clarify expectationsvalidate, acknowledge and demonstrate flexibility to renegotiate when appropriate
  10. Practice Accountability and hold others accountable. Clearly communicate progress of self and others
  11. Listen first with intent to understand (instead of respond) what is important to others and to ensure they feel understood
  12. Keep commitments (according to research, this is the number one way to build trust)
  13. Extend trust to others
 As someone who works in change management, a good exercise might be to go through these behaviors, ask your team their thoughts about them and talk them through. If everyone agrees and has input, it could offer a basis for creating something together. It’s part of what makes change management initiatives successful.
Thanks for visiting my blog, leave a comment below and feel free to share this information with others.
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Quantum Creativity and the Power of Intention

The window of intention

I’ve been thinking about intention lately. How often do we find ourselves slipping into “automatic thinking” ? What does our window of aspiration look like and how do we frame it?

Doing vs. Being | Acting vs. Reacting | Ideal vs. Real |

Intention leads to quantum creativity because for many people, creativity restores order. Some of the most important things that we do in life come from our creativity, which invokes possibilities of new beginnings.

The human condition causes individuals to make flawed assumptions that people do not change. But those of us have done deep self-exploration, know that we get to make a choice to be even better today than the day before.

I am not who I was five or ten years ago because of my curiosity and creativity. They have shown me the excitement to learn and grow that exists around each corner. The good news is that this world is full of random variables that can help us reach and exceed our potential every day, and we have the privilege of being able to share that with others.

Intention – Creativity – Restoration

Thanks for visiting my blog, feel free to leave a comment! Below are some quotes about intention, enjoy!_

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Through Eyes of “Endurance”

The Meaning of Endurance

Embracing uncertainty knowing there is no “around, over or under.”

Having the audacity to do something unconventional, telling ourselves;

“I can, I will, I am, I believe, I trust it is time for something new and it is necessary. I will practice this until it feels normal.

Walking into the unknown with persistent fearlessness and a resilient spirit.

Forging ahead with integrity, courage, bravery, wholeheartedness and guts.

Past those who cast stones of judgement, unkind words and misunderstanding.

They will not define us.

For we know the only way out, is through, and that something better is in store.

Our self-assuredness will take us there,

because it always has.

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This post was inspired by The Weekly Photo Challenge: “Endurance. Show us what endurance means to you.

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Courage is a HEART Word

Courage is a heart wordA few months back I took a six-week online class with Brené Brown based on her book; “The Gifts of Imperfection.” Early in the process we explored the meaning of courage and had a journal activity as seen in the picture. I wanted to share what Brené says about courage because I think it is profound;

“Courage, the original definition of courage when it first came into the English language – it’s from the Latin word cor, meaning heart – and the original definition was to tell the story of who you are with your whole heart…

This is what I have found: to let ourselves be seen, deeply seen, vulnerably seen; to love with our whole hearts, even though there’s no guarantee — and that’s really hard, and I can tell you as a parent, that’s excruciatingly difficult — to practice gratitude and joy in those moments of terror, when we’re wondering, ‘Can I love you this much? Can I believe in this passionately? Can I be this fierce about this?’ just to be able to stop and, instead of catastrophizing what might happen, to say, ‘I’m just so grateful, because to feel this vulnerable means I’m alive.’”

-Quote by Brené Brown, speaking about The Power of Vulnerability at TED

How often do we ask ourselves the question of what it means to live wholeheartedly? It starts with having enough self-compassion to explore our stories about shame and vulnerability without judgement. Brené says that shame can not survive being spoken, so after we have explored our fears and insecurities, it is important to find “your people” – those who have earned the right to hear your story. They are the individuals you know will just listen without judgement. They are the people who will not throw it back in your face at a later time. Next, say it out loud to them. That is a step towards healing and growth.

That my friends, takes courage, and is a demonstration of living with intention. Thoughts feelings and actions in alignment with our values principles and goals. I’d like to think of it as a form of servant leadership that we give as a gift to ourselves. Genuine authenticity feels good.

If there is anything you would like to share about this please feel free to comment below.

Thanks for visiting my blog and have a Happy Valentines Day!

A Random Act of Kindness for Wordless Wednesday

When was the last time someone reached out to you and performed a random act of kindness? I was pleasantly surprised when a complete stranger recently did something thoughtful for me just when I needed it most. As a result of her good-hearted deed, I plan to honor her by paying it forward.

WholeHeartedThankYou

As thought leaders, we sometimes forget the view, taking a moment to acknowledge the people around us via random acts of kindness can go a long way. We get so caught up in our calendars, goals and tasks and only see the road ahead. But when we slow down a little to enjoy, pleasant surprises seem to come out of the woodwork.

The Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday, this past Monday, has been deemed a day to encourage making a difference in communities. As I wrote in a previous post called: Servant Leadership: Facts about Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Dr. King was a strong proponent of servant leadership, so whether or not you took action this week, I would like to propose a challenge.

What can you do to make a difference for someone this week? Please make the effort, then come back here and share your story below. I’d like to hear what you did, the response you got and how it made you feel. I look forward to hearing from you.

Thought Leadership on Community

DSC00299Imagine this: Your entire community — however you define that; your hometown, neighborhood, family, colleagues — are guaranteed to read your blog tomorrow. Write the post you’d like them all to see.

If you are reading this post, that means you are part of my community. I have long held a belief that somehow, I am supposed to make differences that ripples out, affecting a lot of people, in positive ways. So hopefully something in this will resonate for you.

In Latin, the word Communitatum was a noun that meant “fellowship” and the word Unitatum meant “oneness, sameness or agreement.”  From that, the word Community is derived; Fellowship in agreement, which means different things to different people.

In life we have a choice to go down many roads two of which could include judgement or compassion.  Read more of this post

Take Care | Unfolding of a Valiant Journey

We hadn’t seen one another or spoken in quite a while so a year and a half ago we set up a lunch date to reconnect. When he walked into the restaurant he was noticeably thinner. But those friendly, smiling eyes were unmistakable. He was inquisitive and began by asking all about me, my life and family.

Then we shifted to him. He shared that shortly after his mother and brother passed away, he fainted at work and hence began a daunting series of paperwork, lab tests, appointments and phone calls. He had been diagnosed with stage 4 appendix cancer and chose not to pursue surgery. I remained empathetic, silent, and asked what support he needed. The response was; hope, presence, love and an ear.

It’s hard to conceive the unimaginable courage to make and/or not make such a complex decision. At the end of  our lunch I inquired if he was absolutely certain. I don’t recall the answer, but wondered if the question would linger with him.

For Mike Posey

I had an upcoming trip to South East Asia for an MBA class and shared I would pray for him at every mosque, temple and prayer wheel I encountered. I climbed the 272 steps to the highest temple at Batu Caves and offered intentions for my friend. The flower and medallions were given to me by a Hindi priest, one for Mike, the other for myself. Right before my trip, he made a decision to seek treatment options and found out about a rare treatment called HIPEC, that was available and upon my return learned he was eligible. This surgery was the beginning of a valiant journey.

He was balancing tending to the needs of caring for his 85-year-old father, while figuring out how to take care of himself and the test of time was not easy. He was hungry and thirsty, but unable to eat, learning how to manage his own doctor appointments, prescriptions, feeding tubes, colostomy care and more.

He didn’t want to always talk about the cancer, or the fight, or time. He was growing weary and it was teaching us the importance of being fully present and accepting. We had so many meaningful spoken and unspoken discussions those last few months.

When a person is not well, why do they hesitate to ask for assistance?

As the friend watching events unfold, it is a complex balancing act. We want to be respectful, while honoring their wishes. We see this person we love, who needs and wants, assistance, but is concerned about being an inconvenience. The very idea of asking for aid comes along with healthy doses of shame and fear coupled with concern about appearing too needy, weak or helpless in they eyes of others.

“Be still, and know…” Psalm 46:10

Yet in the midst of it all, none of that matters because at the end of the day, all we have is a deep knowing of the mutual gifts that reside when we are fully present for and with one another. It is at the core of what makes community.

Why is it easier to give help than ask for it?

For caregivers, showing up gives us the gift of humility and teaches the valuable lesson that its okay to be imperfect. It is human, and builds community because it brings people together. That is a beautiful thing.

Asking for help is a gift to the person being asked and can be for the one in need.

Mike was a treasure and we learned different life lessons from one another. I miss him, but I celebrate his life by carrying his memory in my heart. We talked about it. It is what he wanted, and that is a good thing.

Please share your thoughts and thanks for visiting my blog

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Written in response to The Daily Prompt: Take Care  “When you’re unwell, do you allow others to take care of you, or do you prefer to soldier on alone? What does it take for you to ask for help? Photographers, artists, poets: show us HELP.”

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Day 18: TED Video Brené Brown: Listening to Shame

Owning our story and loving ourselves through that process is the BRAVEST thing we will ever do”                                                               Brené Brown, from The Gifts of Imperfection

Shame, everybody has it, no one wants to talk about it. Perhaps that is because if we name it, it can’t exist, or many of us don’t know how to engage in the discourse because we never saw the dialogue modeled in our own family systems.

But the consequences of not having the conversation neglect our opportunities for healthier living and leadership. I’m not suggesting that we all pull out our chairs for full-blown kumbayah sessions in professional settings, but rather that we take some time to understand its dynamics. If a negative emotion such as shame inspires us to do something different, that means we take emotional risk, which takes courage. Wouldn’t it make sense that part of being authentic leaders mean we acknowledge our own fallibility and show compassion when we observe it in others? What would the effect be if we had more conversations about times we witnessed someone share stories about overcoming shame? It seems to me that it could be a tool with the power to teach some mighty potent lessons.

I will never forget the knot in my stomach the first time I went to hit the publish button on a blog post that made me so transparent I almost didn’t listen to my gut. But in the midst of my own uncertainty, I chose to do it because like you, we all have stories to tell and  when we give, we get.

Our experiences about adversity have the power to plants seeds of courage and hope. Because I chose to hit that submission button, the person who inspired the story thanked me and shared no one had ever acknowledged her experience in that manner. She had no idea what she endured could have been thought of in such a dignified way. Now that was a GIFT.

As Brené Brown demonstrates brilliantly in the TED video below, compassion is the antidote or shame. It’s a powerful message. What do you think about it? Please share your thoughts below.

Three things I am grateful for today:

  1. Those who have had the fortitude to be vulnerable and share their stories so I could learn more about myself
  2. Brené’s message that vulnerability is not weakness, it is the birthplace of innovation, creativity and change and that it is the most accurate measurement of courage
  3. Her statement that empathy and compassion are the antidote to shame

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Day 4: Climbing the Mountain Takes Time, But Pay Off is at the Top

21 days to happiness: My story and 3 things I am thankful for: 

Courage is the ability to do the right thing, all the time, no matter how painful or uncomfortable it might be”                                                 -Tony Dungy

My mother is one of the most resilient and bravest people I have ever known. She was a single mom during a time when women were not allowed to have checking accounts or credit. We lived in the suburbs and were the only “divorced” family on the block. At the age of 30 she was raising 3 kids all under the age of 7 and I can not begin to imagine what that must have been like.

I remember the feeling of distress when the car broke down and work was a 30 minute drive away. And the tears when her wallet, with all of the money for bills that month, was stolen at a grocery store. She surrounded herself with a community of people who were very supportive.  One year, a family from that group brought us a Christmas Tree on Christmas Eve because they knew we could not afford one.  There were blessings everywhere and despite the misfortune, we always managed to get what we needed. During that challenging time she went back to college and eventually became a registered nurse working in hospice.

So here is my point. It was hard, and overwhelming at times, but she always got back on her feet with dignity.

Her example demonstrated that if she made it through that adversity, there is no obstacle I can’t overcome. In the midst of my search for employment, I have a lot to be thankful for. I am grateful for the gifts that experience taught. It gave me a strong work ethic and  instilled in me the values of education, faith, community, building strong relationships and so much more.

Fast forward to the present. I am about half way through the Executive MBA program at The University of St. Thomas and it is one of the best decisions I have ever made. I am blessed to surround myself with a support system of positive people I trust who give me energy and encouragement. The evolution of acquiring knowledge and learning is hard, fun, exciting, exhausting and challenging, but that is why they call it an education, it isn’t supposed to be easy. Life continues to remind me that delayed gratification works and is far more rewarding.

The groundwork I am laying is making me a better leader every day and pay off is just around the corner because when I graduate, I will have gifts no one can take from me. Integrity, faith, accomplishment, education, wisdom, stronger work ethic so much more. But the most priceless are the values that are being passed on to my son because my passion for learning and growing are showing him I live what I believe. That is my legacy, to leave something behind that will last forever. My thoughts feelings and actions are aligned with my values, principles and goals.

I am proactively adding new tools to my toolbox with the excitement of bringing them to the next adventure. I am building authentic relationships with Professors and 25 amazing people who are in my cohort as I shape my future. We don’t get anywhere by ourselves and community has been and continues to be a resource, teacher, healer and a friend. It doesn’t get much better than that if you ask me.

Four things I am grateful for today:

  1. That the process of reinventing myself has been an invigorating journey
  2. My education and commitment to life long learning and growth
  3. The people who have provided insight and direction with me throughout my career through their mentoring. People like Doug Lennick, Patty Moren, Debbie Magnuson, Priscilla FarisBarb Adams-JohnsonJohn WetzelBarb HendersonBuckley Brinkman, Paul Debettignies, Gary Stinnett, Scott Hyland, JoAnne Pastel, Tom Endersbe,  Marilyn Corrigan, Bonnie Bielen, Katherine Johnson, Jack Militello and so many more.
  4. My mom, who is simply amazing

Personal Courage and Growth is a Choice………..

How many times do we allow negative self talk to be in control when life is so full of empowerment choices? When we are hard on ourselves it is an especially important time to break the pattern because we can. We get to give ourselves permission to learn, recycle and reinvent!

Courage takes guts and is about doing whatever it takes to find a place of peace and serenity. Its about facing the things in life that are hard and walking through them no matter what challenges present themselves. It takes an awful lot of humility to face our flaws, but acknowledgement is the first step to healing.

Years ago I was at a personal growth seminar by a local author by the name of Earnie Larson. I was saddened to hear of his passing in January of 2011. He changed the lives of many people and the quote from him I will always carry with me. “What we learn, we practice. What we practice, we become. What we become has consequences.” That statement was about change and teaching ourselves new behaviors.

When we hear the saying that people don’t change it drives me crazy because guess what?

Change —- Is —- Constant.    

It is the way people try not to transform and grow that is crazy. How easily we forget that fear can be healthy if it motivates us to do something differently. It is how we experience adjustments in our lives and what we do with that information that matters. Personal courage and growth is a choice, so what are you waiting for?

Greatness requires simplicity. Get out there and make it happen because you can.

What does having courage mean to you?