I came in for butter and came out with... - Leadership SHIFT Tip

On Saturday I took my oldest daughter to college to start her 2nd year - which is her sophomore year in my book. This year we had fewer tears and more laughter. She was good. I was the one with the tears. 

Before heading home, I went to the farmer's market to pick up some local flavor and get the best butter on the planet from Kriemhild Dairy Farm. 

Unfortunately, they didn't have a stand at the market, but I got lucky because their farm was on my way out of town. As I pulled up, I noticed a quaint woodshed filled with their dairy products, as well as other local artisanal gems, but there was no attendant. 


They were using the honor system. They assumed the best in us. 

In today's culture, fueled by fear and distrust, it was a beautiful nostalgic moment to when life was slower and we were together. 

The honor system business model is not perfect or crime proof. Research and anecdotal stories remind us that some people will steal and not pay their fair share. 

But most business transactions, including employment, start with some level of trust. I trusted them to sell a fresh, well-made product and they trusted me to pay. 

My experience with Kriemhild strengthened my loyalty to them, and I got something I desired - yes their butter is that tasty. The experience also made me feel good because I was worthy of their trust. That's a win-win-win in my book. 

And that is what happens with trust. It stimulates the release of oxytocin (aka - The Hug Hormone). It's the same thing that happens with new moms and their babies. 

Because of trust, I drove off with a bag full of goodness - yes, feeling trusted sparked my desire to buy more than just butter. 

Unfortunately, not every business relationship will thrive, and some employees will cut corners or take advantage of your generosity. 

But you have a choice, you can lead with a skeptic's eye and wait for your self-fulfilling prophecy, or you can begin to trust more and realize that you don't need a six-page master service agreement to sell more butter. 

You can start with this question, "What needs to happen to be more trusting of those around me?" 

Have fun storming the castle!