Building a Climate of Understanding and Trust

By Caroline Cooper President, Zeal Coaching | October 02, 2011

The success of our relationships determines the success of our business. Studies have shown that one of the bases of good leadership is the trust and confidence your team has in you. If they trust you they will go through hell and high water for you. Trust and confidence is built on good relationships, trustworthiness and good ethics.

But where do we begin in engaging people to build these relationships, and in creating a climate of understanding and trust?

I'm sure we all experienced managers who close down others by over talking and interrupting them. You know the type of person; they fail to listen, dismiss feedback, make assumptions and misunderstand others points of view, leading to mistakes and missed opportunities. They will readily shoot the messenger and disrespect confidences ultimately meaning that others will just bypass them altogether.

They change the goal posts frequently, so no one ever knows where they stand. And when they make a mistake they are quick to blame others and when you dare make a mistake there is all hell to pay for. Confusion, frustration and mistrust reigns.

Self Belief

Building trust starts with a belief in yourself. Are you clear and concise about your own position on issues? Do you tell your team what you really think? Make clear decisions and communicate your stance on issues, and be prepared to defend these when pressed or challenged. Accept that making difficult decisions will be necessary from time to time, and avoid hiding difficult issues under the carpet.

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Eco-Friendly Practices: Corporate Social Responsibility

The hotel industry has undertaken a long-term effort to build more responsible and socially conscious businesses. What began with small efforts to reduce waste - such as paperless checkouts and refillable soap dispensers - has evolved into an international movement toward implementing sustainable development practices. In addition to establishing themselves as good corporate citizens, adopting eco-friendly practices is sound business for hotels. According to a recent report from Deloitte, 95% of business travelers believe the hotel industry should be undertaking “green” initiatives, and Millennials are twice as likely to support brands with strong management of environmental and social issues. Given these conclusions, hotels are continuing to innovate in the areas of environmental sustainability. For example, one leading hotel chain has designed special elevators that collect kinetic energy from the moving lift and in the process, they have reduced their energy consumption by 50%  over conventional elevators. Also, they installed an advanced air conditioning system which employs a magnetic mechanical system that makes them more energy efficient. Other hotels are installing Intelligent Building Systems which monitor and control temperatures in rooms, common areas and swimming pools, as well as ventilation and cold water systems. Some hotels are installing Electric Vehicle charging stations, planting rooftop gardens, implementing stringent recycling programs, and insisting on the use of biodegradable materials. Another trend is the creation of Green Teams within a hotel's operation that are tasked to implement earth-friendly practices and manage budgets for green projects. Some hotels have even gone so far as to curtail or eliminate room service, believing that keeping the kitchen open 24/7 isn't terribly sustainable. The May issue of the Hotel Business Review will document what some hotels are doing to integrate sustainable practices into their operations and how they are benefiting from them.