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We lose in every way when we lose trust

Dave Horsager was the keynote speaker at the Iowa State University Extension Annual Conference on Oct. 10. He’s a Minnesotan, an illusionist and entrepreneur. He uses illusions to show how easy it is to be deceived.

Illusions and realities in the workplace
1. (illusion) A person can create success on his or her own. (reality) You need your coworkers and clients. Horsager says, “To think we can do anything significant on our own is egotistical and untrue.”
2. (illusion) Instant gratification is the goal. (reality) You need vision for what is ahead and the possibilities in that future.
3. You don’t need to learn any more. (reality) Horsager says, “All readers are not leaders, but all leaders are readers.” Successful people are humble and have a desire to keep learning.
4. You’re above the law. (reality) Integrity is critical. It’s doing what is right over what is easy.
5. A single person can’t make a difference. (reality) We all have significant opportunities to make a difference.
6. Technology will make things so much easier. (reality) We don’t work less with new technology.
7. It takes big things to make a big difference. (reality) It’s the little things compounded that make a big difference. You are the sum of your life’s decisions.

Four little things can make a big difference

1. Sincere care (of your team, your client)
Listen empathetically. It’s the best way to care. It is work.
Appreciate people. Show your appreciation. Write notes for specific things someone did. One of the top reasons employees leave jobs is they don’t feel appreciated.
Deliver what you say you will deliver. If you can’t, apologize immediately and correct the situation.
2. Steady courage
Take intelligent risks. If you fail, learn from the failure.
3. Sight clarity
Without vision, teams and organizations fail. When that optimistic possibility is shared, workers understand how it ties to their jobs. Vision motivates people. “The simplest way to have some vision is to first determine the best outcome. In other words, identify the desired end. Second, define a plan to get there. Third, create accountability. Finally, work the plan.”
4. Sound character
Integrity. Ray Kroc, founder of McDonald’s, said, “The quality of leaders is reflected in the standards they set for themselves.”

Trust is built with two key components: integrity and respecting people

Horsager says when there’s trust in a workgroup, in an organization, you get productivity. Trust brings sustained success. Without trust, the organization loses sales, reputation, morale and valuable employees.

From ‘Speaking of Success: World Class Experts Share Their Secrets’, 2006 Insight Publishing and the Oct. 2007 presentation

Integrity is more than honesty