As we push just about everything into the cloud, and advancements in technology shrink or eliminate traditional barriers for people to interact and exchange value, the "trustworthiness stool" presents a simple conceptual model or theory, if you will, that can cleanly and clearly shape the playing field and help guide our decisions.
Call this a theory in development, as I've been mulling it over for a great long while, but all aspects are not fully fleshed out. I thought I would present it here on the MIX to lever the power of the creative minds collected here to help build out this model and tease out the specifics.
Essentially, the crux of the problem is that as Managers, we some times cannot see the whole problem or even a small fraction of the problem in order to craft real, viable solutions. The Trustworthiness stool presents four components by which any person in the operation can swiftly reach a viable solution by asking and answering four simple questions.
The myriad of complexities facing today's employees - from the grassroots up to the C-Suite - make the challenge of crafting real solutions to specific problems that translate into viable action very difficult. By deploying four simple questions, managers and those who work with them, may be able to reach decisions that result in positive powerful action in a more swift manner. Essentially, as you work toward the aims of your organization (and this should apply to any type of organization), consider the following three legs to the Trustworthiness Stool.
- Content: How good is it? No matter your business, content rules. Bad content equals a dissatisfied customer and no repeat business.
- Applicability: Is your content useful? Because applicability is the true measure of worth, no matter how good your content is, if it's not usable, again, you have dissatisfied customers and no repeat business.
- Monetization: Are you ready to capitalize on your content to sustain your orgnaization? You can only monetize high quality, applicable content. As such, monetization is the third leg of the stool, and of equal importance to content and applicability because if your aim is to sustain your organization, you have to generate some kind of cash flow to do so.
At the top of the stool is the Trustworthiness platform. The above three legs are useless with out something to sit on, and trustworthiness is the key to the whole operation. With out a credible, untarnished reputation, all you have are three sticks on which to sit. Depending on how well formed they are, sharp stool legs are not very comfortable with out a viable platform. Your job as a manager, all the while you and your team are developing high quality, applicable content that can then be monetized, is to build a rock solid reputation that helps you grow the platform of the stool such that your whole organization can stand upon it.
There are many components that go into developing a high level of trustworthiness.This is where you come it. In terms of developing an ongoing management behavior that is suitable for the 2.0 era, what elements would comprise your trustworthiness platform? How will you behave to enable the generation of high quality, applicable content with in your operation such that it can be monetized and sustain your company?
With the following image in mind, you could spread the model through out the organization so that people at all levels are empowered to answer the questions and work on solutions that lead to viable actions
- How good is our content? If it sucks, what are we doing to improve it? If it's great, how do we sustain it or make more great content?
- Is our content applicable? If not, see question 1 above as if it's not applicable, it's not good content.
- How can we monetize the great content we have at our disposal?
- Are we trustworthy and if not, how do we gain more trustworthiness and credibility for the whole operation?
These questions are simple to pose, but hard to answer. At every turning point where you are facing a difficult choice, you can come back to these questions. Pose them. Answer them. If you your answers continue in the negative, it will become very clear what you should do next.
It should be noted that, while the top of the stool is vital, the shape of your three legs will also affect the pitch of the stool. Trustworthiness could be rock solid, but if your content is off or your are unable to monetize, your people may slide off one side of the stool or the other.
- Read through the hack
- Think about what might comprise your own trustworthiness platform
- Share with your employees/people/teammates
- Start asking the four questions
- Act on your answers to those questions, all the while working to generate high quality, applicable content, that can then be monetized as you constantly pay much attention to growing and amplifying your trustworthiness in the market place.
Not sure if any one else deserves credit here, as I think I've not seen anything like it out there. I could be wrong. I sure hope I haven't recreated the wheel.
Very curious to know what you think.