Anyone who has ever been involved in improvement will recognise the need for trust. It is an essential ingredient to generate productive employees and engaged stakeholders. A productive employee is someone that feels safe, safe enough to experiment and challenge, which is exactly what is required in all working environments, itu2019s also imperative for the improvement professional focused on step change improvement and innovation. An engaged stakeholder will provide valuable support to enable results through change, improvement, and transformation.
When working with people to change their thinking and/or the work they do, from where they are now (current position) to where they need to be in the future (desired outcomes), it is the bottom part of the Gibb model, how those people feel about it, which has the most influence over the success of the quality initiative, change or improvement.
Trust has a close partner in the form of respect, they are two sides of the same coin. When these go hand in hand, respect shifts from being a behaviour to becoming a deeper feeling.
Respect is like a baton passed off to someone who then passes it back. Thought of in these terms means that to gain respect, the feelings, needs, wants, ideas, fears, thoughts and preferences of others must be considered first. Itu2019s about modeling the desired behaviours.
In the workplace, there are leaders who use power and/or fear to command respect. But does that work?
Some people may only have to think about one or two of these levels in their daily work, but others may have to build respectful relationships at every level.
A theory suggests that the notion of respect dates to a time when mankind lived in tribes. As the tribes roamed, hunted and looked after its members, those who werenu2019t respected could be left behind in the wilderness, excluded from a share of the food, left out because they were considered to have no worth or value to the tribe.
Itu2019s no different today. Every improvement professional, indeed any professional, needs to build trust and respect because when a working culture is founded on trust, loyalty is engendered.
Upstream the benefits of this approach mean that:
Trust and respect are the glue that holds relationships together. Where they exist, so does integrity, and where integrity exists for the skilled and dedicated improvement professional, success also resides.