Trust: It takes years to build and seconds to lose.
We’ve all heard this old saying. Whether we’re talking about our personal or professional relationships, developing (and maintaining) trust is critical.
When it’s not there, relationships begin to suffer and break down - and it has a detrimental effect on everyone involved.
The importance of trust is something to keep in mind as you think about bringing new executives into your franchise business. We talked about this a bit in our last onboarding article, but given its importance, I wanted to dive into it a little deeper.
Trust is fundamental to the franchising industry - you can’t be successful without it! Between the franchisor, franchisees, suppliers and vendors, franchising involves a lot of professionals working together. So, when you bring a new executive into the organization, it’s really important that they spend time developing relationships and building trust. If they don’t, they’re going to have a difficult time succeeding.
You can help get this process started by including an introduction to the big players in your organization during the onboarding process: this includes some of your top franchisees, the corporate staff and your suppliers and vendors. If you have an advisory council, that’s a good place to start. Invite the new hire to a meeting, and allow them to listen in, contribute and get to know the members on a personal level. If they make a good impression, this can create some easy “wins” for the new executive by helping them develop solid relationships right away. Encourage these individuals to help by giving the new hire some visibility opportunities where appropriate, and talking up their past accomplishments, education, experience, more professionalism, etc. with others in the organization.
The bottom line is this: you don’t want to take trust for granted. It’s important, it’s worthwhile and will have a big impact on the future performance of your franchise organization. If you want to help your staff and franchisees build and maintain trust, the “Speed of Trust” by Stephen M. R. Covey is a great read with a lot of sound advice. Encourage everyone to read it - and then put the practices learned into place.
When trust deteriorates, all things fall apart. By talking about trust and being purposeful about building it in your organization, you can avoid this outcome - and build a franchise culture that demonstrates respect, reliability - and will grow!