Trust is to an organization what oil is to a car engine. It keeps the moving parts from seizing and stopping forward motion. But trust is not something you can take for granted. It takes months—sometimes years—to build. Unfortunately, you can lose it overnight.
Most leaders talk to their teams about how they value honesty. However, judging by their behavior, very few of these leaders actually encourage it.
Several months ago, a former executive at our company made a commitment to a third-party via email. It is obvious that he didn’t research the cost of his promise nor did he get anyone else’s approval. Neither I nor my CFO was aware of the obligation until the other party brought it to our attention. When I learned that the commitment was north of six figures, I gasped.