The greatest asset of one's leadership is trust. If people trust you they will follow you. If they do not trust you, they will not voluntarily follow you. Nothing is more important for influence. So, how do leaders build trust?
Biblical leaders understand that trust is earned not simply given. Trust takes years to build, but can be destroyed in seconds.
Leaders build trust in four primary ways:
Character- A Trust of Consistency: When leaders act in integrity, they are believable and thus trusted. They keep agreements, behave consistently, act fairly and sacrifice for the sake of others and the organization. They display moral character.
Care & Concern- A Trust of Regard for Others: When followers perceive that leaders care for them, listen to them, have concern for them, and genuinely hold their best interests in mind, they trust these leaders.
Competence- A Trust of Capability: Leaders who make good decisions and exercise skillfulness are leaders who build credibility. They are seen as dependable because they possess competencies in what they are doing, and those competencies help the organization succeed. Leaders who hold a track record of success enable followers to have confidence in them for the future. Their history of competence builds trust. A history of incompetence makes trust difficult for followers.
Communication- A Trust of Authenticity: Sharing information about the organization, sharing information about oneself, telling the truth, admitting mistakes, giving constructive feedback, maintaining confidentiality—these build reciprocal trust, because by communicating this way to followers, a leader is in reality trusting them.