50 Posts 50 Rules: Tom Peters on Leadership #16

16. Leaders trust trust. 

This rule is so obvious that it almost bears no explanation. 

So let’s go a different direction instead. During my Masters degree I had the honor to separately meet Jim Kouzes and Barry Posner of The leadership Challenge fame. If you do not know so this is in my estimation the best all around leadership book. If you only want to read one, this is it. Jim and Barry in their book relate the years of research they did on leadership what did they find? The number 1 thing followers want in a leader. Does not matter culturally, geographically, contextually, they want honesty. When you dig deeper into this you find that trust, trustworthiness and integrity are intimately linked to the concept of honesty. 

What a surprise the thing that a leader does almost instinctively, live and behave in a trustworthy manner, attracts followers toward their cause.

Go figure…

Challenge: Take a chance today. Trust someone with a relatively harmless bit of information. The person should be someone you have yet to decide whether to trust. The information should be relatively inconsequential and something you have not shared else wise. See if they keep the trust. Pay attention to how you feel during the exchange and afterward. Capture the emotional memory of how that made you feel. Leaders trust all the time not carelessly but they must do so over and over. Learning how to do so and getting comfortable doing so is a powerful thing and a needed leadership ability.

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