Hire and promote first on the basis of integrity; second motivation; third capacity; fourth understanding; fifth knowledge; and last and least, experience. Without integrity, motivation is dangerous; without motivation, capacity is impotent; without capacity, understanding is limited; without understanding, knowledge is meaningless; without knowledge, experience is blind.
-Dee Hock (founder and former CEO of Visa)
At Proclaim Interactive, integrity is paramount. We recognize that we’re only as strong as the team that works here. Proclaim is a dream, a concept, an ideal. It is made possible through the work of skilled men and women of high character who dedicate their work days to making Proclaim’s clients better.
Trust is on Top
Business is conducted through relationships and trust is the foundation of those relationships.
-Dennis S. Reina & Michelle L. Reina
At Proclaim, we’ve got a list of seven core values that every employee must have. When we interview, we ask behavioral questions to try and asses these traits. When we do our annual reviews, we look at how our staff and business practices have displayed these characteristics. We’ve even gone as far as to make them a binding part of our employment contracts and to list the similar character traits we expect from clients in our proposals. We don’t just take integrity seriously, it is part of our DNA.
“We don’t just take integrity seriously, it is part of our DNA.” tweet this
Being “trustworthy” is central to all of the other values we hold. While a lapse in communication (another of our core values) may provide minimal harm to a relationship, a failure of trust can destroy a relationship beyond repair. It isn’t an accident that the Boy Scouts of America starts their “Scout Law” with trustworthy. Lord Baden-Powell had apparently already established the supremacy of being trustworthy in 1908 when he penned Scouting for Boys and began it with the mandate that “a scout’s honor is to be trusted.” It seems that “trustworthy” has been at the top of the list for well over a century.
What is Trustworthy?
We’re not an overly pretentious bunch at Proclaim, so we have a pretty common-sense definition of “trustworthy:”
Be dependable and honest so that people can count on you. If you say you’re going to do something, do it. Keep your promises. Be open and admit your mistakes.
Merriam-Webster says that if you’re trustworthy you’ll be “worthy of confidence.” You can count on trustworthy people.
Why is it so Important in Business?
Fear and trust are the chemical currents that power every good or bad thing an organization does.
-Liz Ryan (Forbes Columnist)
To get an idea of why trustworthy is the fundamental currency of business, imagine trying to buy your groceries if you couldn’t count on the trustworthiness of the store in the transaction. You’d walk up to the meat counter and buy beef, and it might be meat from a horse that is tainted with bacteria. You’d buy a box of cereal only to find it filled with confetti. When you went to pay, the amount on the cash register might show $125 when the total of all the items is only $80. When they ran your credit card, they could authorize it for $200. This sounds like a nightmare, doesn’t it? Nobody wants to live in a world like this.
Trust Builders and Destroyers
Every day we build and destroy trust in an organization with the decisions we make. Dennis Reina, PhD, and Michelle Reina, PhD, have developed a Transactional Trust Model® that helps tremendously in understanding how trust is created and attacked in an organization.
Trust builder – Managed expectations. Mutual respect and credibility, people do what they say they will do.
Trust destroyer – No follow-through, disrespect and a lack of personal credibility.
Trust builder – Open and honest communication. Active listening, transparency and free-flowing dialogue.
Trust destroyer – Communication is secretive, gossip, suspicion and distrust festers.
Trust builder – Input is encouraged and utilized.
Trust destroyer – Micromanagement and selective decision-making.
All this is great information, now what do we do with it? Ultimately, organizations aren’t trustworthy, people are. Each of us, as accountable individuals, has to make the decision each and every day to “do the right thing.” We’ve got to fight the tendency to take the easy road out of a situation and work hard to do what we say we’re going to do. We must communicate openly and stop trying to cover up our mistakes. We have to listen to others and value their input. We are the key to creating trustworthy organizations. The degree we each individually accomplish this will determine the success our organization enjoys.
“organizations aren’t trustworthy, people are.” tweet this
Read more about the team that makes Proclaim tick on our “Meet the Team” blogs.
Established in 2000, Proclaim Interactive is an award-winning, think-out-of-the-box digital marketing agency located in Wilmington, NC. Proclaim Interactive provides website design, social media management, SEO and general marketing services designed to amplify clients’ messages. For more information call 910.795.4143.