To my cost, time and financial, I’ve recently had to pay for an essential service to be restored because I failed to pay attention to the emails reminding me that payment card details needed to be renewed. My fail, I thought…until the confirmation of the transaction came through from an organisation and email address different to the one I thought I had been transacting with. Not slightly, but entirely different.
The mists cleared. I’d ignored the renewal emails because my service – with a well-recognised global brand who I know as my service provider – chose to notify customers of essential information under an unrecognisable identity.
As leaders we have a duty to be clear, straightforward and transparent, don’t we? In how we present ourselves both personally and as organisations. If not we risk breaking trust and attracting a torrent of customer complaints that our people have to deal with. Stress goes up, engagement and performance go the other way.
Moreover, if we’re opaque with the outside world that’s what all our people will be watching for, likely expecting and probably emulating. Trust is the fuel of high performing organisations and it starts with our behaviour as leaders…in how we show up, in how our words and actions are in sync. In how we remove incongruities – be that in our policies and processes, in the way we treat people, in the equality of opportunity, in the care and respect we show for all stakeholders.
These aren’t nice to haves when things are going well…they’re the foundations of leadership and of organisations that contribute to a better world.