Fundamental #23 – Work from the assumption that people are good, fair and honest


Operate from the assumption that people are good, and that the intent behind their actions is positive. Faith and trust create better relationships and generate better results than do doubt and cynicism. Act out of this belief.

Trust — or the lack of it — is inherent in every action that we take and affects everything that we do. Trust is the cement that binds relationships, the gel that makes business deals intact, and the glue that ensures political systems are stable. Understanding the meaning of trust allows us to work towards alignment and the accomplishment of business goals.  It is a critical element in every action that we take whether it is business or personal.  

Trust establishes faith in a relationship.  Faith enables us to go beyond facts and have security about another person or organization.  Faith is knowing—and trusting that the right outcome will occur regardless of contract verbiage or potentially uneasy circumstances.  It is believing that the right thing will be done.  

So how do we demonstrate trust on a daily basis?  How do we live this fundamental?  We do this by putting customers’ interests in front of our own, by not only meeting—but exceeding their expectations.   We over deliver on everything we do, and always keep our promises.  Trust is strengthened when an organization is more interested in bringing value to their customers rather than simply turning a quick profit.   Trust ensures that more long-term and sustainable profit will be achieved because of that valued relationship.  When customers see that we take this approach and truly care about adding value to what they do, they will be open to purchasing additional products. 

So what happens when or if trust is damaged?  Well the best approach is not to have this happen in the first place, but when or if it does, the error cannot be ignored.  It must be dealt with quickly and rectified.  No business is perfect and mistakes will happen. As long as situations are explained quickly with appropriate solutions, trust will not be damaged – and it’s possible it could even be strengthened.

Think about our larger customers Peterbilt, Kenworth and Broderson.  They have been customers since Webco was founded in 1980!  There are a lot of fab shops that can do their work, and do it more inexpensively that what we do.  However, our customers do not have trust and faith in our competition to look out for their best interests like we do.   These customers have remained loyal to us because they have trust and faith in our company—and have each and every day for the past 34 years.  As discussed at our company wide meeting on June 27th, we have on time shipping and quality issues to overcome.   If we don’t rectify these issues soon this could result in long term trust issues, however I believe that we will quickly overcome these issues and our customers trust will not waver. 

As you read the above on trust and faith, think about how your daily work affects our customers and your coworkers.   Are you conveying trust and faith in your actions daily?

– Mike Johnson