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we think we need control

Updated: Mar 5, 2020

In our world that is increasingly VUCA (Volitile, Uncertain, Complex, and Ambiguous), we can easily and understandably and reflexively try to control as a reaction to what we experience. And the attempt to control the uncontrollable is an exercise in frustration and futility.

What we need is trust.

And just like a tiny seed that needs attention, water, and soil, it behooves us to pay attention and invest energy in cultivating this Core Skill of Trust.

Trust is vital because it’s an essential element to any collaborative effort. And let’s face it: the complex problems we face in our communities, in our organizations, as a culture, as a planet absolutely require collaborative efforts.

When trust is present, groups get in the flow together. And actually require less energy because of the momentum, buy-in, and freedom to fail and innovate that emerges.

When trust is absent, there is truckloads of wasted energy, protection, making assumptions from a distance, and micro and macro tension.

The good news is that we can cultivate the core skill of trust if we are intentional about it.

What You Can Do to Cultivate Trust

1. The Brightspot Trust is the creation of Lisa Lambert and Rick Katagawa. They are doing great work to convene leaders who see the high value in growing this key asset to our shared future.

They are currently offering free hour-long interactive webinars on Zoom that explore the dynamics and nuance of trust. There are a couple times on March 3 and again on March 10.

I participated in one this past Tuesday and found it quite helpful in nourishing my understanding of trust and why it matters.

And you can go deeper with them and sign up for their Trusted Leaders Lab that starts March 11.

2. My work with clients and their teams is all about building the core skill of trust.

It’s critical that we establish visceral experiences of trust with our colleagues, and the science shows how when we play together in a container that balances safety and risk, this visceral trust grows incrementally and robustly over time. This is why applied improvisation is perfect for this need. And my workshops are intentionally designed to translate the learning, mindset shifts, and skill building to your day-to-day. I believe in increasing engagement and including all voices in a structured way, so you as a leader are helping to facilitate a shared understanding that acknowledges and values the wisdom in the room.

Drop me a line at and let’s chat.

3. Journal with pen and paper for 5-10 minutes tomorrow morning. Why does trust matter to me? Do I want to intentionally cultivate it? What might happen if I do? What would happen if I don't?

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