In a recent Harvard Business Review article based on data from the 360 assessments of 87,000 leaders, the authors identified three clusters of factors that establish trust: relationships, consistency, and good judgment. But, one of them is more important than the others.
While, intuitively, they expected that consistency would be the most important element, they found that relationships that had the most substantial impact. To quote their conclusions: "When relationships were low and both judgment and consistency were high, trust went down 33 points. This may be because many leaders are seen as occasionally inconsistent. We all intend to do things that don’t get done, but once a relationship is damaged or if it was never formed in the first place, it’s difficult for people to trust."
Another example of how vital relationships are in the effective functioning of organizations!