Err on the Side of TRUST

Posted In: Confidence and Control
Posted On: 3/14/2017


Should we immediately trust new people who come into our lives or should we give them a testing period to see if they earn our trust?

I have been pondering this question recently because the idea of trust keeps popping its little head up everywhere I go.

My first example of trust popping up happened with my job.  I stepped into a new CEO role a few months ago and that created a lot of uncertainty amongst the people who work with me and for me. I know they were wondering: “What changes will Jane make? Will she be fair? How will the changes impact me?” And I tried to say, “Trust me.  I’ll do the right things.  I have a track record of success. I have people who can vouch for my integrity.”

jane miller, jane knows, millennial career advice

But can they trust me without first-hand experience?

This was hard for me to answer.

What about me trusting the new team? Should I trust that they will do the right things for the business or should I question every action?  Where is the fine line between questioning to understand and questioning to raise doubt?

This was hard for me to answer.

Was it wrong for me to be offended that there was no trust when a terminated employee decided to hold his/her computer hostage until he/she got the final pay check?

This was hard for me to answer.

Recently, a mentee of mine was considering a job offer.  She liked the company’s leadership very much but was not certain that they would give her the best offer.  She wondered how much negotiating she should do. Should she trust that they would give her the best offer or should she assume that they were lowballing her?

This was easy for me to answer.

It was easy because I was not living the situation, I was viewing it from the outside looking in.  And from the outside, it was very clear that the new company valued her and wanted her to join. And there was nothing for her to lose by placing her trust in her new boss.  And with that clarity, I recommended that she accept the offer.

Shortly after our meeting, she accepted the offer and was thrilled that she made that decision.  In her email to me, she said that in our discussion about her decision, she took away that she should “Err on the Side of Trust.”

Now it is time to take my own advice.