When you’re rushing into a burning building, you’d better trust the guy in front of you.
But how do you build trust? And how do you know who to trust?
As we explore ways to become healthier, wealthier and wiser… it’s a critical issue. The research behind our Triad proves our Connections are critical.
Getting the answers to these questions correct will lead us to good things, including vastly improved relationships.
We speak with grand experience.
We had a few adrenaline-rich jobs in our younger days that required huge levels of trust.
Right after we turned 18, one of them was fighting fires.
What a gig.
We were well-trained. And we needed to be.
Help Is on the Way
On one of our very first calls for help, a man lost half an ear in a car accident. In another, a man nearly got swallowed up in a mud pit. And we’ll never forget the guy who somehow got stuck under his dash after mowing down a telephone pole.
There was plenty of death. But plenty of life, too.
What stands out the most were the lessons in leadership.
They’re with us still today.
A piss-poor leader is obvious. He’s selfish, unmotivated and doesn’t lead for long.
But a good leader, well, that’s a thing of beauty.
We’ve been blessed with some good ones.
Some say it’s a talent folks are born with. But we disagree.
With some Know-How, we learn the military is right – leaders aren’t born… they’re made.
Three C’s of Leadership
To prove it, we look at a study done by Patrick Sweeney, a retired U.S. Army colonel and social psychologist.
In 2003, General David Petraeus personally asked him to defer his teaching at West Point and head to Iraq.
The soldier saw it as a rare and ideal chance to study leadership, not in a lab but in a war zone.
What he learned is something we must all learn.
Sweeney found there are three key factors that must be in place for men to trust their leaders. He calls them the “3 C’s” of trust.
They are competence… character… and caring.
It’s no surprise, they’re quite similar to our Triad.
Competence is key, of course. If a leader doesn’t know what he’s doing… nobody is going to follow.
Fortunately, it’s easy to teach. In fact, it’s often a product of time.
Character, on the other hand, can’t be taught. A leader may not be born loyal, honest and respectable… but he’d better figure it out if he ever wants to be trusted.
Caring is self-evident. But here’s the thing most folks don’t get. A caring leader won’t coddle and appease just to make the troops happy or get folks on his “team.”
He does what’s right for them and, most important, the mission, no matter the short-term pain.
The epitome of this idea is when a leader says, “I won’t ask you to do anything I won’t do myself.”
We didn’t need to hear those words when we grabbed the hose and tapped on our captain’s shoulder telling him we were ready to attack the fire… the biggest fire of our career.
The blaze was huge – two stories of wind-swept flames.
We couldn’t even get close to it without spraying a large mist of water to cool the air in front of us.
But as our partner marched toward it, we never doubted him, his decisions or his motives.
We trusted him.
We trained together, so we knew he was competent. We spent countless hours together, so we knew his character was strong. And we knew he cared… because we cried together (again, death was a part of the job).
But here’s the thing. We know most readers aren’t off fighting wars or running into burning buildings.
But don’t think all of this doesn’t matter.
It does… and it’s hugely important to our success and happiness.
The idea of trust is just as vital whether you’re risking your life or simply embarking on your daily routine.
Get this. In the 2017 World Happiness Report published by the United Nations, the U.S. dropped from third in the world… to 14th.
The reason? Trust.
Fewer Americans trust their leaders.
As trust wanes, so does our happiness.
But there’s an easy way to build trust with your friends, colleagues and, most important, loved ones.
It’s how we boil all of this down to a simple, singular idea.
The 3 C’s are good. They’re spot-on and very helpful.
But we’ve found a simpler and just as effective measure.
If you want to be a trusted leader, always put the relationship ahead of the individual.
It works whether you’re fighting fires… suppressing enemy fire… or having a tiff with your spouse.
Put the relationship first and all else will fall in line.
Don’t believe us? Look around.
Who do you trust… the politician who says anything to get elected? The lover who just wants a good time? Or the friend who calls just to stay in touch?
Put the relationship first.
Folks will follow you. You’ll get more of what you want. And, the science doesn’t lie, you’ll be happier.
Trust is everything.
Source: Manward Press