Sarah’s Snippets 7/28/2015

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Sarah’s Snippets 7/28/2015

On July 28, 2015, Posted by , In Sarah's Snippets, With No Comments

 “…in an ever more complex, wired world the winning strategies will be based on a ‘we, not I’ philosophy. ‘We’ can’t happen without trust. It’s the central issue in human relationships. Without trust you cannot lead. Without trust you can’t get people to believe in you or in each other. Without trust you cannot accomplish extraordinary things.” The Leadership Challenge by Kouzes & Posner

During a recent SALT staff conversation we were discussing this issue of trust. As the quote states, trust is the central issue in human relationships. In fact the very process of building, and maintaining, any relationship with other people requires trust. Each person involved in a group relationship must be able to trust others and be trustworthy at the same time. Otherwise, little progress can be made in moving forward together.

The question quickly arises: how does one create a climate of trust? First, trust must be acknowledged as an important element in building a relationship. When working in groups, the leader(s) must be committed to living with trust as the foundation. This also means being committed to investing the time into creating and nurturing trust.

Second, being the first person to offer trust by showing vulnerability and letting go of control is a powerful way to encourage others to trust. It has been said that trust, like laughter, is contagious. So going first begins moving the contagion.

A third element is listening to others then honoring their viewpoints. This demonstrates respect and helps others feel safe within the group. Without that feeling of safety people cannot function effectively nor be free to innovate.

Credibility is another key component to trust. Credibility is built gradually by backing words with actions. It is essential for maintaining trust over time and for accomplishing great things together as a group.

These same elements apply to coalitions as much as to individual groups. Groups working together must create trust-based working relationships between each other to move forward collaboratively toward a common mission. It seems to me, when coalitions fail to achieve it is because more attention is given to establishing positions among the players than to establishing trusting relationships. Yet, as the above quote states, winning strategies of the future will be built on “we.”

As Schoharie County strives to move intentionally ahead, more emphasis needs to be placed on building trusting relationships and therefore strong, achieving coalitions. These strong coalitions will create extraordinary achievements and will make our envisioned future a reality.

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