I am writing a blog edition after a considerable hiatus. The reason for this is the disillusionment with the reading habits of people. It appears there is very little audience and patience for the written word. Even when there is, the absence of dialog is heartbreaking. For me writing is not just to express myself and let my steam off. It is about generating a dialog and therefore Thought Leadership. I would like to quickly add here that I have not stopped myself from constantly examining where I might lack in communicating my ideas.
Recently I was asked a question about “Trust – whether it was at all necessary in the context of relationship”. This question could not stop me further from writing this edition of my blog. Trust is a very passionate subject with me. I believe it is the genesis of all relationships and can never ever be supplemented. Let me stick here to the context of Leadership.
People often use the terms “Trust” and “Faith” interchangeably. Nothing could be further from truth. Trust is inherent and intrinsic to a relationship. It does not demand anything and it remains as a supportive element of a relationship; be that between a leader and a follower or any other human relationship we might know on the face of this earth. Faith on the other hand is a corruption of trust, in that it is demanding. Trust is born out of conviction and respect for ideas, while faith is born out of imagination and a hope for ideas to succeed.
When we observe history, we can find very few leaders such as Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King and Nelson Mandela who banked on the principles of trust to generate followership. A majority of leaders such as Hitler, Mussolini, Khomeini, Saddam Husain and / or George Bush (both son and father) whipped up passions of the people and demanded that their doctrine be subscribed to and followed in absolute faith. In the modern day, leaders such as Gorbachev or Obama who subscribe to the former view of creating trust have been often sidelined and history / people are not very kind on them despite their great qualities of leadership. In the corporate world, trust is a very rare word even when the very models of B2B, B2C and C2C are based on the principles of trust. Perhaps a very rare name comes to mind such as Herb Kelleher, Chairman & CEO of Southwest Airlines or Jamshedji Tata.
Trust takes nothing more than a dialog to build relationships while Faith takes enormous amounts of PR. The ideas of trust are usually fundamental and core to life while that of faith are alien and imposed upon life. Those of us living through the “Organic” Fad know by now that anything that is imposed has to give way eventually for a simpler way of living. Shouldn’t a connected world learn to trust people and cultures rather than be dictated by the narrow-minded dogmas of a few misleading powerful people who choose to impose themselves as dictators? Isn’t this the significance of globalization where people in the world can benefit from understanding and learning each other in a spirit of mutual trust and respect for freedom?
Perhaps one of the foremost things that we humans need to learn in this modern free and democratic world is the meaning of Freedom. It is not the ability to do whatever one wants without being watched. It is the ability to do things that everybody watches and appreciates as meaningful to their own lives.