Leading with Trust

You Matter – The Truth About Your Purpose and Value

You MatterYou matter.

I wish I had said that to my friend John when I saw him last. It was a chance encounter at a neighborhood gas station. We chatted about random, everyday stuff and then we drove away, sure to see each other soon. Soon never came.

A few weeks later John committed suicide.

You matter.

This past Friday my company held its annual meeting and we had a guest speaker, Matthew Emerzian, share about the life experiences that lead him to write a book, Every Monday Matters—52 Ways to Make a Difference. Matt talked about the significance of helping people understand that they matter and the impact that realization has had on his own life and the lives of many others. It’s a message my friend John needed to hear. It’s a message I needed to hear. It’s a message you need to hear.

You matter.

You are one of a kind! In this world of nearly 7 billion people there is no one exactly like you and that makes you a precious, rare jewel. You owe it to the world to share your uniqueness with those around you. We don’t want to miss out on your brilliance.

You matter.

Life isn’t about you. Until you understand that true joy and fulfillment comes from placing the needs of others ahead of your own, you will fail to grasp how much you matter. Serving yourself may lead to quick success but it will eventually leave you unfulfilled. Serving others leads to lifelong significance.

You matter.

You are not alone. There are times when everyone doubts their self-worth, but the good news is that if you seek them out, you’ll find many people who are willing to come along side you to provide mentoring and coaching.

You matter.

“Why?” is the wrong question. Whenever we face a challenge in life our first instinct is to ask, “Why?” “Why did this have to happen?” “Why me?” Obsessing on “why?” can paralyze and prevent you from realizing how much you matter. Instead of dwelling on the “why” of your circumstances, focus on the “what.” “What can I learn?” “What do I need to do to grow from this experience?”

You matter.

Share your story. An excellent way of serving others and discovering how much you matter is to share your story—the challenges you’ve faced, the struggles you’ve conquered, the mountain tops you’ve climbed as well as the valleys you’ve traversed. You’ll be amazed at how many people have experienced similar life situations and the strength and support that results from the bonds you create.

You matter.

The Leader’s Role in Building Trust

Whose responsibility is it to build trust in a leader-follower relationship? The leader! It’s up to the leader to make the first move to earn the trust of his/her followers. Not only does the leader have to earn trust, the leader has to grant trust to others so they feel empowered to act responsibly and with authority to achieve the goals set before them. I was interviewed for the June issue of Ignite!, the monthly leadership newsletter of The Ken Blanchard Companies. The article discusses the leader’s role in building trust, challenges of low trust, strategies leaders can pursue to start building trust, and the benefits of high trust levels on both the personal and organizational levels. Check it out!

Shortly after the interview with Ignite!, I viewed a TED Talk by General Stanley McChrystal, where he shared some of his key leadership lessons. He emphasizes the responsibility leaders have to develop trust with those they lead when he says “I came to believe that a leader isn’t good because they’re right; they’re good because they are willing to learn and to trust…You can get knocked down, and it hurts and it leaves scars. But if you’re a leader, the people you’ve counted on will help you up. And if you’re a leader, the people who count on you need you on your feet.”

Wise words for us all to consider.

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