Thoughts about F.I.R.E
November 11, 2014
10 Cultural Practices Survey (plus outtake video!)
January 8, 2015
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Cultures Built On Continuous Feedback




Clift Notes



The One Thing That Changes Everything

How trust affects the trajectory and outcome of our lives- both personally and professionally – and what we can do to change it.


Nothing Is as Fast as the Speed of Trust


You Can Do Something about This


The First Wave – Self Trust

The Principal of Credibility

Beyond “ethics”:  Why personal credibility is the foundation of all trust and how to create it.


The 4 Cores of Credibility

Core 1 – Integrity

Are You Congruent?

Core 2 – Intent

What’s Your Agenda?

Core 3 – Capabilities

Are You Relevant?

Core 4 – Results

What’s Your Track Record?


The Second Wave – Relationship Trust

The Principle of Behavior

How to behave yourself out of problems you’ve behaved yourself into.


13 Behaviors

Trust is established through action……..- Hank Paulson, Chairman and CEO, Goldman Sachs


There are no facts, only interpretations…….Friedrich Nietzsche


The only relationships in this world that have ever been worthwhile and enduring have been those in which one person could trust another……Samuel Smiles, British Author and Biographer




Be honest.  Tell the truth.  Let people know where you stand.  Use simple language.  Call things what they are.  Demonstrate integrity.  Don’t Manipulate people or distort facts.  Don’t spin the truth.  Don’t leave false impressions.

What we say is true and forthcoming – not just technically correct……..Dell Inc.’s Code of Conduct


                What upsets me is not that you lied to me, but that I can no longer believe you……Friedrich Nietzsche







Genuinely care for others.  Show you care.  Respect the            dignity of every person and every role.  Treat everyone with respect, especially those who can’t do anything for you.  Show kindness in the

little things.  Don’t fake caring.  Don’t attempt to be “efficient” with people.

Christianity:  “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”

                     Judaism:  “What you hate, do not do to anyone.”

         Islam:  “No one of you is a believer until he loves for his brother what he loves for himself.

  Hinduism:  “Do nothing to thy neighbor which thou wouldst not have him do to thee.”

Buddhism:  “Hurt not others with that which pains thyself.”

    Sikhism:  “Treat others as you would be treated yourself.”

         Confucianism:  “What you do not want done to yourself, do not do to others.”

                  Aristotle:  “We should behave to our friends as we wish our friends to behave to us.”

        Plato:  “May I do to others as I would that they should do unto me.”




Tell the truth in a way people can verify.  Get real and genuine.  Be open and authentic.  Err on the side of disclosure.  Operate on the premise of “What you see is what you get.”  Don’t have hidden agendas.  Don’t hide information.

Try to be transparent, clear and truthful.  Even when it is difficult, and above all when it is difficult.

                …….Jean-Cyril Spinetta, Chairman and CEO, Air France


                Strong reputations result when companies are transparent in the way they conduct their affairs.

                …….Charles Fombrun, Author of Reputation



Make things right when you’re wrong.  Apologize quickly.  Make restitution where possible.  Practice “service recoveries.”  Demonstrate personal humility.  Don’t cover things up.  Don’t let pride get in the way of doing the right thing.

Watergate wasn’t so much a burglary as it was the failure to recognize mistakes, to take responsibility for them, and to apologize accordingly……….Jon Huntsman, Chairman, Huntsman Chemical



Give credit freely.  Acknowledge the contributions of others. Speak about people as if they were present.  Represent others who aren’t there to speak for themselves.  Don’t bad-mouth others behind their backs.  Don’t disclose others’ private information.

Leaders also establish trust by giving credit where credit is due.  They never score off their own people by stealing an idea and claiming it as their own……Jack Welch


                You can accomplish anything in life provided you don’t mind who gets the credit…..Harry S. Truman



Establish a track record of results.  Get the right things done.  Make things happen.  Accomplish what you’re hired to do.  Be on time and within budget.  Don’t overpromise and underdeliver.  Don’t make excuses for not delivering.

I don’t thin you have a full trusting relationship until you are actually at the point that you deliver success repeatedly.  When one of my major suppliers says we want to have a trusting relationship, I think, “What a lot of rubbish that is!”  I turn around and say, “I don’t trust you.  I am not going to trust you until you repeatedly deliver success to me.”…………Peter Lowe, IT Director, Home Office, UK








Continuously improve.  Increase your Capabilities.  Be a constant learner.  Develop feedback systems – both formal and informal.  Act on feedback you receive.  Thank people for feedback.  Don’t consider yourself above feedback.  Don’t assume today’s knowledge and skills will be sufficient for tomorrow’s challenges.

The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write but those who cannot learn, un-learn, and relearn…….Alvin Toffler


One of the reasons people stop learning is that they become less and less willing to risk failure.

                                                ………..John Gardner, Author of Excellence and Self-Renewal


Anyone who stops learning is old, whether this happens at twenty or eighty.  Anyone who keeps on learning not only remains young, but becomes constantly more valuable regardless of physical capacity…….Harvey Ullman




Take issues head on, even the “undiscussables.”  Address the tough stuff directly.  Acknowledge the unsaid.  Lead out courageously in conversation.  Remove the “sword from their hands.”  Don’t skirt the real issues.  Don’t bury your head in the sand.

Leaders need to be more candid with those they purport to lead.  Sharing good news is easy.  When it comes to the more troublesome negative news, be candid and take responsibility.  Don’t withhold unpleasant possibilities and don’t pass off bad news to subordinates to deliver.  Level with employees about problems in a timely fashion……Jon Huntsman, Chairman, Huntsman Chemical




Disclose and reveal expectations.  Discuss them.  Validate them.  Renegotiate them if needed and possible.  Don’t violate expectations.  Don’t assume that expectations are clear or shared.

Almost all conflict is a result of violated expectations……Blaine Lee, Author of The Power Principle




Hold yourself accountable.  Hold others accountable.  Take responsibility for results.  Be clear on how you’ll communicate how you’re doing – and how others are doing.  Don’t avoid or shirk responsibility.  Don’t blame others or point fingers when things go wrong.

All power is a trust; and we are accountable for its exercise…..Benjamin Disraeli


A good leader takes more than their fair share of the blame and gives more than their share of the credit…..Arnold Glasnow


Get good people and expect them to perform.  Terminate them quickly and fairly if you make the wrong choice…..J. Willard Marriott Jr., Chairman and CEO, Marriott International











Listen before you speak.  Understand.  Diagnose.  Listen with your ears – and your eyes and heart.  Find out what the most important behaviors are to the people you’re working with.  Don’t assume you know what matters most to others.  Don’t presume you have all the answers –or all the questions.

If there is any great secret of success in life, it lies in the ability to put yourself in the other person’s place and to see things from his point of view – as well as your own…..Henry Ford


We’ve all heard the criticism “he talks too much.”  When was the last time you heard someone criticized for listening too much?…..Norm Augustine, Former Chairman, Lockheed Martin


Leadership has less to do with walking in front and leading the way than it does with listening to the needs of the people of the company and meeting them…..Charles M Cawley, Chairman and CEO, MRNA America




Say what you’re going to do, then do what you say you’re going to do.  Make commitments carefully and keep them.  Make keeping commitments the symbol of your honor.  Don’t break confidences.  Don’t attempt to “PR” your way out of a commitment you’ve broken.

Stand up for what’s right, in small matters and large ones, and always do what you promise…..Reuben Mark, Chairman and CEO, Colgate-Palmolive


{I}t is a leader’s responsibility to demonstrate what it means to keep your word and earn a reputation for trustworthiness……..Hank Paulson, Chairman and CEO, Goldman Sachs


There are three signs of a hypocrite: when he speaks he speaks lies, when he makes a promise he breaks it, and when he is trusted he betrays his trust…..Muhammad





Demonstrate a propensity to trust.  Extend trust abundantly to those who have earned your trust.  Extend trust conditionally to those who are earning your trust.  Learn how to appropriately extend trust to others based on the situation, risk, and credibility (character and competence) of the people involved.  But have a propensity to trust.  Don’t withhold trust because there is risk involved.

Trust men and they will be true to you; treat them greatly and they will show themselves great……Ralph Waldo Emerson   


Leadership without mutual trust is a contradiction in terms…..Warren Bennis, Author of On Becoming a Leader


People ask me how I’ve had the interest and zeal to hang in there and do what I’ve done.  I say, “Because my father trusted me with very stern discipline: he trusted me.”   I’m stuck, I’ve got to see the trust through.  He trusted me.  I trust other people.  And they did the job.

                ……..Robert Galvin Jr., Former CEO, Motorola






            Organizations are no longer built on force, but on trust…..Peter Drucker


{T} rust is the most significant predictor of individuals’ satisfaction within their organizations…..Jim Kouzes and Barry Posner, Business Authors.


A trusted leader can only exist over the long term in a large organization if there are good myths about him, and particularly about his consistency….Henk Broeders, Head of Cap Gemini, E&Y For The Netherlands


The core of the matter is always changing the behavior of people……Professor John Kotter, Harvard Business School


{Business executives need to} recreate a trust agenda.  Nothing good happens without trust.  With it you can overcome all sorts of obstacles.  You can build companies that everyone can be proud of.

……Jim Burke, Former Chairman and CEO, Johnson and Johnson


When customers are loyal to your brand {have trust}, they are more apt to listen to your message, read information from your organization more carefully and be more willing to accept calls marketing new products and services…….Charles Giordano, Bell Canada International


Falsification and fraud are highly destructive to free-market capitalism and, more broadly, to the underpinnings of our society…our market system depends critically on trust – trust in the word of our colleagues and trust in the word of those with whom we do business…..Alan Greenspan, Former Chairman, U.S. Federal Reserve


{C}ustomers get impressions about products from hundreds of sources, but when they believe a company is a good citizen, they feel more positively about a brand…..Shelley Lazarus, Chairman and CEO, Ogilvy & Mather




  1. Increased Value
  2. Accelerated Growth
  3. Enhanced Innovation
  4. Improved Collaboration
  5. Stronger Partnering
  6. Better Execution
  7. Heightened Loyalty


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