#129 Two Circles: Do They Trust You With Their Aspirations

Two Circles.

The one on the left represents the expertise your company needs to develop to get to the next level.

The one on the right represents the expertise your employees would like to develop - the growth opportunities that would intrinsically motivate them.

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In a perfect world these two circles are identical and you all thrive together. One big happy family.

In the real world things aren’t quite so simple. Aligning the needs of the individual with the needs of the business is an enormous piece of work.

And you can't even begin that work until you know what lives inside their circle. Until you understand their personal and professional growth aspirations.

And here’s the tricky part - they’re not going to make it easy for you to access this vital information. This is private stuff that they keep under lock and key, and the only way they’re going to trust you with it is if they truly believe you care about them as an individual.

And you can’t, long-term, fake caring.

#128 Representation: Who Do You Trust With Your Reputation

Several years ago we were shopping for a minivan to haul around our growing family. Our “must have” list read like this

Safety features
Safety features
Safety features

We didn’t care about color, leathers seats, sound system, we just wanted a bus to get us from point A to point B safely.

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Not all the car salesmen we met shared our priorities. One in particular, at the very first dealership we visited, was hellbent on convincing us that side and rear airbags were overkill. A useless luxury that didn’t really make the car any safer. And then he pointed out that it was our lucky day. He just so happened to have a van on the lot without those expensive unnecessary safety features. And he was ready to deal.

If he hadn’t been so slimy we’d have ordered a van, with all the airbags, from him that afternoon. Instead, we walked and bought it someplace else.

Flash forward to today, our little kids who were going to ride in that van have mostly flown the coop. But I still hold on to my distrust for that dealership and don't hesitate to tell others our story. So even though our bad experience may have been just one rogue salesperson misrepresenting the ethics of the dealership - the reputational damage lingers.

Who represents your business? Who answers your phones? Who provides your service? Who communicates with your vendors and partners? Are you 100% sure they’re acting in alignment with your beliefs?

If not, you’re taking a huge risk with your business and personal reputation.