Gallup Poll: Who Do You Trust More? The President or Congress | The Trust Edge

Americans Trust Obama Most on Economy

The Gallup Poll shows that Americans lack of trust and confidence in President Obama and his handle on the economy is now turning around as he now has a rating of 57%. What could be happening that is turning people’s views? Who do you trust more at the moment to handle the current situation of the economy? President Obama or Congress?


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Do the Right Thing | Character

Character, does not come from reading a book or going to a conference. Character is being intentional and consistently working hard. In a world that is bent out of shape and lacking in trust, finding people who have a trustworthy character is hard to come by.

Building character comes down to asking yourself one simple question: Am I doing the right thing? Being honest over telling others what they want to hear; helping others in need instead of focusing on our own needs is what is necessary to be a leader with character.

Everyone wants to be liked, but being honest over being liked is more important. In the fall of 2012, Hurricane Sandy hammered the Eastern Seaboard days before the Presidential election. Governor Chris Christie of New Jersey, a member of the GOP, had a difficult decision to make: Accept the help from his party’s opponent, President Obama? Or take a path that would agree with his party?

Christie chose to help the people of New Jersey and their needs instead of focusing on his party’s political needs and agenda. He even went as far as to praise President Obama in his response to Hurricane Sandy.  Christie’s focus was outside of his interests. He was more concerned about the needs of the citizens of New Jersey than offending his party or his 2013 re-election run for governor. This action by Christie boosted his ratings among the Democratic Party, but ultimately showed the people of New Jersey that he was not just a politician, but a Governor who cares about his people and can be trusted.

When you think of honesty and helping others in need who is the first person to come to mind? Chris Christie is only one example of a person whose character was authentic. The most recent Gallup poll lists the top 5 most trusted professions:

  1. Nurses
  2. Pharmacists
  3. Medical Doctors
  4. Engineers
  5. Dentists

Nurses, pharmacists, doctors, engineers, and dentists all take care of the people they serve. They assure healthiness and safety.  Chris Christie proved his character and trustworthiness by choosing what was right over what was easy. 


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Expectations: U.S. Military | Clarity

Expectations. Deadlines. Priorities. Specificity. Clear Communication. The Military, whatever branch it may be, Army, The Marine Corp, Navy, Air Force, The National Guard or Coast Guard, each has a set of expectations that are clear and specific. What they promise is what they mean and they will deliver.  No candidate goes into basic training expecting it to be a walk in the park. Training will be rigorous but ultimately the best will come through, competent and the best at what they do.

Being candid is not being afraid to tell the truth in the clearest terms possible. In basic training candidates are trained for real live war. The training officers do their utmost to make sure that it is as real as battle. If not, these candidates would most likely walk into war putting themselves and others around them in danger. Communication has to be absolutely clear. One miscommunication and someone could end up dead.

The military’s form of training and expectations is an extreme example of being candid. But for their purpose it effectively trains and readies the troops for battle. Being frank and transparent makes one trusted, and the team, in spite of uncertain times, remains unified. Authenticity and frankness inspire. For the military to be successful and ready at any moment they have to have high expectations, and clear communication.

So, how can you be as clear in your communication and expectations?

  • Listen
  • Empathize
  • Avoid manipulation. Don’t overstate or understate.
  • Speak honestly and without exaggeration.
  • Stay focused and avoid distractions.
  • Ask questions.
  • Glean information from the nonverbal communication.
  • Keep an open mind and do not jump to conclusions.
  • Do not criticize.
  • Simplify the complicated.
  • First seek to understand, and then to be understood.
  • Mean what you say. 


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Pat Summitt: 38 Years of Success | Trust in Sports

After 38 years, the Tennessee Lady Volunteers Basketball players, coaches and community had to say goodbye to the most competent and successful basketball coach, not only in women’s basketball but in NCAA history. Under Pat Summitt’s leadership, the University of Tennessee Lady Vols basketball program was the most elite the nation has ever seen. Young girls from fourth grade on up would attend Summitt’s basketball camps every summer in hopes of learning how to be the best. Any girl who has ever had a passion for the game of basketball has dreams of being a part of that 11 woman roster and the privilege of wearing the orange and baby blue jerseys.

Pat Summitt made an appearance at 31 NCAA Tournaments, 22 teams made it to the Final Four and eight won NCAA Championship titles. At the end of her career Summitt claimed the title of the Most Winningest Coach in NCAA history, above John Wooden and Mike Krzyzewski, with a record of 1098-208 (.841).

What makes Pat Summitt so great? Trust. Summitt’s life and career exude the Eight Pillars of Trust.

Clarity: Summitt had a clear vision and purpose. She “instilled a pattern of success in her players and constantly challenged them to reach their potential as a student and athlete.” Her program reinforces that a clear vision unifies and motivates.

Compassion: Ask any of Pat’s current and former players and each one will tell you that Summitt was the hardest coach but the most loving. “Her players speak of the opportunities afforded to them later in life with a degree in life lessons from Summitt…” Summitt was trusted because she was a selfless and sacrificial leader who thought beyond her own interests.

Character:  Integrity is being the same in thoughts, words, and actions. Pat Summitt never boasted, although proud of her players she was respected for her humility. Her principles and values she carried with her at home, in practice and in games. Her accountability came from a staff that respected her principles and they supported her in them.

Competency: Pat was raised with the principles of hard work, and as a young girl after she finished her farm chores she would end up playing basketball in a hayloft.  “ She was strong … had great instincts … was awesome on defense … took a charge like a greedy housewife … denied the ball all over the court … rebounded with authority … took the ball to the hoop … and then could knock the lights out over a zone defense.” These characteristics led her to playing on the Olympic Women’s basketball team, a four year career in the WNBA and landing a job as the UT Volunteers Women’s basketball coach at the age of 22.

Commitment: Pat is the ultimate picture of commitment. She played basketball for the University of Tennessee for her college career and coached there for 38 years. Summitt’s passion for the game was the reason for such great commitment to the team.

Connection: Pat was one of the best coaches in the NCAA not only because of her knowledge of the game of basketball. She knew that building a great team could only happen through connecting with her players and staff. She cared beyond herself, asked great questions, listened, collaborated, was genuine, was grateful, and made a rule to never complain.

Contribution: Pat was the pioneer of NCAA women’s basketball.  She contributed her life to the game of basketball.  She was known to deliver results, and not just in basketball. At the end of her coaching career she held a record of 1098-208, but one of her greater successes was that her program had a 100% graduation rate. She produced great athletes as well as great minds and leaders to society.

Consistency: Even after the retirement of Pat Summitt, because of the consistency displayed by the University of Tennessee Lady Volunteers basketball team, the program  still has a reputation to be the ideal place to play college basketball.

There are many good coaches and good sports programs. To be considered a great coach, which is trusted by the entire sports world, requires the characteristics of the Eight Pillars of Trust. Pat Summitt exudes trust in leadership. Even now as she begins to battle Alzheimer’s, the sports world trusts that Pat will still work hard, fight hard and never compromise.



Trust in Leadership, Trust in Sports, Building Trust, commitment, consistency, connection, contribution, character, Pat Summitt, University of Tennessee, Lady Vols Basketball, Pat Summitt Alzheimer’s

Want to Help Someone? Shut Up and Listen | Compassion

Ernesto Sirolli, Founder of the Sirolli Institute, shares with students why it is more important to listen than to give out one’s own ideas. People do not need to be patronized. Learn how to respond to people and become a servant to those you work with.

The Trust Edge gives tips for effective listening. Keep eye contact. Listen with your body. Practice patience. Empathize. Be present. Avoid answering the electornic interrupter. Hold one conversation at a time. Ernesto expands more on these effective listening tips in this video. 


Ernesto Sirolli, Sirolli Institute, Effectiveness, Effective listening, The Trust Edge, Patience

Competency Level of Senators: Balancing the Budget | Trust in Government



Fifty-five Senators have a Juris Doctorate. A Senators job description is more than simply making laws. They also have to budget to balance. Only seven members of the Senate have an MBA. Shouldn’t there be a greater level of competency in the Senate if part of the job description is to balance a budget?


Senators, Trust in government, Trust in Leadership, democracy and trust

A Sure Way for Undecided Voters to Decide | Trust in Government

Votes will be cast next week, and one of the world’s most influential people will take office on January 20th. Who will decide? The undecided voters will tip the balance left or right. If you are one of them, what metrics will you use? Trust expert, author and researcher David Horsager has a solution. Put on the lens of trust to help you pick what you see as the more trusted side of the fence to land on. 

“Trust has the ability to accelerate or destroy any business, relationship, or COUNTRY,” says David Horsager, author of #2 Wall Street Journal Best Selling Book The Trust Edge. “The election is completely determined by trust.”

But, what does it mean to be trusted? Horsager outlines 8 pillars of trustworthiness that he has uncovered through research and consulting. The eight pillars are clarity, compassion, character, competency, commitment, connection, contribution and consistency. There are 8 questions to ask when deciding who you believe is the best candidate for the job.

Mitt Romney or Barack Obama

1. Who has a clearer vision?

2. Who has higher character?

3. Who is more capable to lead the country?

4. Who is more likely to get results?

5. Who is more committed to upholding the Constitution?

6. Who is more compassionate?

7. Who is more willing to collaborate with others?

8. Who is a more consistent leader?


Whoever you chose the most is the leader you trust the most.

With the 8 pillars of trust in mind, which candidate seems to be more trusted? Last week, Horsager and his team polled people across America and found a fairly even distribution except for 2 questions. 60% of those polled believe Barack Obama is more compassionate and 60% believe Mitt Romney is more committed to upholding the Constitution. Who do YOU trust more?

The single uniqueness of the greatest leaders and organizations is trust. According to David Horsager, “Trust requires time, effort, diligence, and character. Inspiring trust is not slick or easy to fake.” Our country needs a leader who can be trusted. As defined by Horsager, trust is a confident belief in someone or something to do what is right, deliver what is promised, and to be the same every time, in spite of circumstances.

 Who do you trust to lead America?

The Blame Game: A Lack of Competence | Trust in Government

The election is all about trust. Outside of the electorate, the only reason anyone gets voted into office is because they are the most trusted to do the job that is required of them.

A recent poll found that the U.S. Congress has the lowest trust rate since Gallup Poll began polling, 38 years ago. Here are a few reasons. First, the American people want solutions not blaming. Last year in the midst of the economic downgrade, the term “Tea Party Downgrade” was coined by President Barack Obama. On the opposing side the GOP leaders called the economy an “Obama Downgrade”.

Second, there is a gap in competency. The majority of legislators have laws degrees, but too few are fiscally competent, and yet they are called upon to organize one of the biggest budgets in the world. The House of Representatives members currently hold 167 law degreesand only 22 MBAs. The Senate members hold 55 law degrees. Members of Congress may have the right heart but a trust problem develops when there is not proper education to have the ability to clearly see the future impact of financial decisions.

Third, legislators used to spend time after hours on the floor over a dinner or a drink, today every extra ounce of time often goes to raising funds for the next election. There becomes a lack of contribution to the work that they were elected to. Without connection time outside of work, civility and trust go down. The most precious resource for any individual, organization, or government is trust. If you would like the greatest efficiency, earn trust. A lack of trust really is your biggest expense.


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JP Morgan Chase & Co. Shatters Trust and Investors’ Confidence | Trust in Business

What happens when financial institutions like JPMorgan Chase & Co. breech trust? Investors will put less money into JPMC and other large firms because again, trust is broken. This always hinders growth in the economy because investments in business spur growth. Recently, JPMC’s top level executives apparently sold back bad loans for only a portion of the actual cost. They then proceeded to leave the mortgages in mortgage backed securities (which are no longer backed) and kept the money they received from the originators.

Can JPMC ever rebuild trust with their investors? YES! There is always hope. Look at the example of BP. After the BP oil spill in 2010 many thought they would never be trusted again, yet the BP brand is coming back because they are building what The Trust Edge calls the PILLARS OF TRUST. Unlike some insurance companies after Hurricane Katrina, BP made promises and kept them. They paid the amount the government demanded of them and more. Plus, they did it ahead of the scheduled payment date. The only way JPMC will rebuild trust after offering a sincere apology will be to make and keep a commitment. It is the only way to rebuild trust.

What about transparency versus confidentiality as far as they relate to trust? We trust people that keep confidential what is shared in confidence. On the other hand, we trust leaders that are transparent with things that can and should be shared. The problem here goes back to the character pillar not lack of communication. JPMC appears to have hidden information that should have been shared. That action destroys trust and brings into question how they do business at their core. The opposite of trust is skepticism and they have bred a lot of it with their actions.

The real problem in this case is one of character. Individuals without character affect whole companies. A breech of character always has consequences. 

What will this suit do for the economy? At first the disappointment will lower trust and investing. However, knowing that those who commit fraud will be held accountable ultimately rebuilds trust in the government and the economy. The most precious resource for any individual, organization, or government is trust. If you would like the greatest efficiency, earn trust. A lack of trust really is your biggest expense.


JPMorgan Chase & Co. trust, Trust in Business, commitment, trust and loyalty

Do You Trust the NFL? | Trust In Sports

Who do you think the position of the ball should have been awarded to? Should have it been ruled an interception or a touchdown?  

The NFL is apparently closer to reaching a deal with the original referees. The NFL has been using replacement referees from Division III colleges and high schools for the first three weeks of the season. The NFL’s decision to use replacement referees over experienced referees conflicts with the competency pillar. The NFL is trusted to put the best performance on the field including players and yes, referees. How can fans trust the NFL if the officiating of the game is subpar?

 During the Monday Night Football game between the Seahawks and the Packers, Seahawk’s Golden Tate and Packer’s M.D. Jennings both appeared to have caught the ball simultaneously in the end zone in the game’s final play. The replacement referees eventually ruled it a touchdown for Seattle and the Seahawks won the game because of the call.

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