I was recently asked how to be a more authentic leader, build trust and lead others so that they can meet us without resistance. The challenge is that trust building is more than taking a handful from the toolbox of leadership.
Yes, facial expressions, choice of words, gestures and body posture are important.
However, the source of authentic leadership is knowing and leading from who you are and what you stand for.
Others respond to us differently the moment we realise our purpose at work and in life, become conscious of our individual values, and formulate what really matters to us from standing in this committed self-awareness. They can read us more easily, when we know ourselves. And that builds trust.
When we communicate from what matters to us, we are not proclaiming universal truth. Instead, owning our own truth invites others to give a voice to their truth and to show up authentically as well.
Trust comes intuitively to people. Most of them could not pin down why they trust one person and not the other.
The good news is that most of us generously trust most people we interact with in a safe environment.
That said, there are people whom we trust immediately and others whom we cannot quite make out. And as we cannot make them out, we stay reserved and wait for them to show themselves.
Trust is hard to develop in others.
The most effective first step is to start with ourselves and trust in our own vision and values. All else will fall into place.
Great leaders stand out by being clear and staying true to their purpose and values in actions and words. And by creating environments where others dare show their true colours.