The Speed of Trust: The One Thing That Changes Everything

Stephen M.R. Covey with Rebecca R. Merrill, Free Press, 400 p., 2008 (5th edition)


  • Haltung und Selbstorganisation
  • Mitarbeiter- und Teamführung/Stakeholder

"Trust is the key skill for all leaders in our new global economy" - says author Stephen M.R. Covey in his book 'Speed through Trust'. However, if you take a look at the statistics, you can see that we are in a deep crisis of trust. Only 49% of Germans believe they can trust others. Even many business relationships are rooted in the idea that both parties cannot trust each other, so certain costly, bureaucratic controls must be maintained. Covey refers to this as a trust tax, which causes people to communicate less openly and slows the pace of business. The question is whether these costs and time spent securing deals would even be necessary if there were a trusting relationship between the parties. Would companies be faster and more profitable if trusting relationships existed between employees, colleagues, and customers? Covey explores these questions and describes techniques for leaders to create or restore trust.

Stephen M.R. Covey is the former executive director of the Covey Leadership Center. Covey credits his success primarily to his understanding and establishment of trust, as well as its, often underestimated, positive effects. For him, trust is the basis for all communication, relationships, projects and successes. He uses many examples, some of his own, from his career to show how trust inside and outside the company affects the economic and financial results of the company. According to this, trust always influences speed and costs: when trust increases, speed increases and costs decrease. Covey justifies this, among other things, with the so-called trust dividend, which produces not only greater speed and better profitability, but also greater personal happiness and enjoyment of life.

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