Squeezing the Trust Out of Life

Lance Discipline, Integrity, Leadership Leave a Comment

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The task of holding water in your hands demands calm, relaxed, open hands. Brute force and a tight grip are utterly counterproductive to the effort.

People are no different. Whereas Trust and Persuasion create a relational flywheel that makes trust and persuasion easier the next time, Control and Coercion/Manipulation create the opposite effect. Each iteration in that direction becomes less effective, requiring even more brute force the next time.

Being a Control Freak can produce great results, but it doesn’t scale. The larger the mission and the group of people needed to accomplish it, the harder it becomes to keep control of all the variables. The impulse is to squeeze harder, but that just drives more cooperation, good will, and people away. For the Control Freak, the notion of letting go of things is beyond merely counter-intuitive — it feels absurdly crazy.

Too bad: it’s the right thing to do.