Lubricant of the High-Trust engine: Communication

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The fifth question asked when judging someone’s trustworthiness is “Do I understand you?”

It’s difficult to trust someone who you don’t understand.

Seminar Meeting Office Working Corporate Leadership Concept

In flying in general, and Naval Aviation in particular, a lot of effort is dedicated to effective communication.

Misunderstandings can be deadly if a pilot misunderstands what altitude she is assigned, a tower controller doesn’t uses non-standard terminology at a busy airport, or a co-pilot neglects to keep the pilot in command informed.

How much can you trust someone who doesn’t communicate effectively?

Every Blue Angel flight debrief addresses the team’s communication and how it can be improved, both in the air and on the ground. The goal is to make it so clear, concise, and direct that everyone understands the message, it was delivered efficiently, and the intended recipients had no doubt it was meant for them.

How often does your team discuss communication?

Do you work on being more clear, more concise, more direct?

How do you ensure the intended messages are received by the right people in a timely manner?

Were the messages received the same as the messages that were sent?

My current team in corporate aviation is undergoing dramatic change. The source of our success is also often the source of frustration — it all revolves around how well we communicate.

A huge leadership failure is incorrectly assuming that communication has occurred.

When communication is poor, frustration goes up, productivity goes down, more time is required to fix mistakes, drama has to be dealt with, trust needs to be restored.

Better to make the investment in time and effort up front.

Be a High-Trust Leader — make continuous improvement in COMMUNICATION a priority.