Why Unity Builds Trust
Ever wondered why the product or service you’re offering doesn’t pique the interest you were hoping for or doesn’t continue to appeal to your target market? Especially when your company or department has experienced continued success and growth in the past. When the foundations were built, constantly improved, and appeared solid. Essentially, your offering is still appealing. In fact, you can prove your success and offering. Stakeholders benefitting from your service can tangibly see and compare the delivery of your service to your competitor companies or other departments. Why then the regression, or the change in support for you and your team?
A critical component responsible for this lack of impact often relates to the public image created by the internal stakeholders of one’s company or a department. And often a public image rests on both unity and the professionalism and consistency of brand that flows from unity. If you and your team do not appear united and bought into your product or offer, existing external stakeholders may lose faith and abandon you. Furthermore, potential new stakeholders may ignore you. And what leads to an appearance of disunity or a lack of buy-in from internal stakeholders? Often, the cause is poor leadership and lack of direction or confidence in the product or offering from the top.
In the business of offering a service, I have learnt that as different parts make up a machine in order for it to be effective and the wrong fittings make it less effective to users, so do different directions on a path when it comes to the service expected by travellers from their guides. All the guides need to do is put their ideas, concerns and risks on the table, and present the path to the travellers that will best lead to the road the travellers wanted and believed in. If the map you present shows that the course is uncertain or broken, or that you may not have confidence in the map, the travellers feel unsafe and will find alternatives.
A company or department that is united in all its gains and losses, and which is transparent and accountable in a fair, consistent and ethical manner, and whose team members are all singing off the same song sheet, confident in their product and offer, builds trust. And trust is the foundation for keeping your stakeholders bound in and attracting new stakeholders. External stakeholders cannot feel secure in investing in a product or service if what is portrayed by the internal stakeholders is self-inflicted reputational damage to the company or department’s brand. Whether your product or service is great – whether it’s the best, people need to feel like their investment in the people representing a brand is worth it.
I have been in the Human Resources industry for a long time. It was very early on that I made it one of my primary responsibilities to try my utmost to make people feel that the service offering from HR was not always going to be what individuals wanted to hear, but that everyone on the team would be fair, consistent, united, and have empathy for every situation or individual we were delivering a service to. Critically, my team members would exhibit complete confidence in the service offered. And that confidence built trust. That trust enabled more and more stakeholders to reach out to the HR team to make use of our service offering.
Remember arrogance and power struggles have never been appealing. When you’re part of a team, always work towards understanding each other, supporting each other, and show unity in what you believe in, stand for and your direction.
“Credibility is lost when there are big discrepancies between what leaders say and what they do… Increasing credibility requires openness. Hidden agendas will destroy trust.” – Judit M Bardwick
Until next time…
Yours in Adapting & Being
Categories: Leadership & Management