Leadership On The Line

There are numerous opinions on what creates success in business. Competence, Character, Good Intent, and Proactivity have been the attributes of a Relationship Capital Leader. I have leveraged them as part of my own purpose and behavior for growing my business but it is also the knowledge of which I coach and train leaders on. As a professional who turned entrepreneur, I have learned is that it really all comes down to trust. Yes, earning credibility that resulted in positive business benefits. Earning trust is more critical than ever because leadership is on the line.

Leadership is about putting your people in control and letting your shared purpose and values drive higher levels of performance that are underpinned by high relationship capital trust. Relationship Capital Leadership is about influencing and supporting a team of leaders and followers within your organization and across your entire ecosystem of customers, partners, and suppliers that will attract distinction, innovation, and financial performance in a business world of growing uncertainty.

Martha Payne’s Blog

NeverSeconds is a blog created and directed by Scottish schoolgirl Martha Payne. On it, she shares her thoughts and experiences of eating school meals at her primary school in Lochgilphead.

Nine-year-old Martha’s first full NeverSeconds post was on May 8th, 2012 which showed an image of a slice of pizza and a single potato croquette which sat alongside sweetcorn and a cupcake for dessert. Her written comment was; “The good thing about this blog is Dad understands why I am hungry when I get home. Today he made a Banana Loaf, shame I don’t like bananas, see I am not perfect!”

The NeverSeconds blog exploded locally and then nationally, after garnering support from chef and school meals supporter Jamie Oliver, who tweeted; “Shocking but inspirational blog. Keep going, big love from Jamie x.” The blog had received 3 million hits by June 2012. By February 2014, it had reached 10 million. Martha also began sharing pictures of school dinners sent to her by children in United States, Germany, Japan, Spain, and Taiwan. The resulting traffic generated mass media attention with Martha featured as a guest on BBC Radio 4’s You and Yours and later becoming the subject of a segment of “Radio 4’s The Food Programme”. After NeverSeconds went viral, Martha’s father had a meeting with the school council, which then announced that all students would be allowed unlimited servings of fruit, vegetables, and bread. Now that is how you create social influence, social credibility and deliver meaningful results from the bottom up. The Martha Payne’s of the world are coming to work at your company in greater numbers every day.

Advocating For Relationship Capital Leadership Today

Relationship Capital Leadership or (RC) is an open industry standard of guiding principles and accountability of a person, organization, or product/service’s credibility or quality of trustworthiness with respect to these two types of social interactions:

  • Commitment Feedback
  • Appreciation

Commitments and Perceptions are captured and scored as Relationship Capital Points or RCPs. Each Entity has a Relationship Capital Account in with RCPs are debited or credited. Keep a commitment and your RC account is credited with an RCP. If you do not keep your commitment, your account is debited.

Follow A.C.M.U. to Operationalize Relationship Capital (RC)

Assessing Relationship Capital (RC)

In order to consistently earn Relationship Capital (RC), as a business leader you and your team need to understand your current cultural context. As we discussed earlier, there are 7 guiding principles of behavior you must follow in order to consistently earn “RC” in your social interactions. They are honesty, accountability, responsibility, respect, support, trustworthiness, and boundaries.

Get a high-level assessment of your company’s current standard of culture. After you have reviewed your results, we would be privileged to collaborate in addressing your challenges and leverage our methodology to support or accelerate your company’s movement to a relationship capital leadership model performance.

Capturing Relationship Capital (RC)

Now that you have agreed to the scope of your Standard of Culture project and defined your business objectives, it is now time to capture Relationship Capital (RC). Standard of Trust Group has developed PE-ER, a Software-as-a-Service or SaaS platform. All you need to do is have your stakeholders register on this platform and you can begin to capture “RC” in your organization and across your ecosystem of stakeholders.

Measuring Relationship Capital (RC)

There are numerous ways to display the RC you have earned through kept-commitment and RC that has been lost. You could have a simple color code of GREEN for RC being earned and RED for RC being lost.

We plan. We develop. We deliver. We assess and evaluate the results of the assessment. We revise, deliver the revised material, and assess and evaluate again. Perfection is always just out of reach; but continually striving for perfection contributes to keeping both our instruction fresh and our interest in teaching piqued. -E.S. Grassian

Utilizing Relationship Capital (RC)

The utilization of Relationship Capital (RC) that is captured and analyzed has a strategic impact on your organization’s performance:

  • Business Development — A client interaction is a critical touch point to utilizing your Relationship Capital (RC) and in securing new and recurring revenues and profits. One example may be to have your clients and prospects score the RC of your client-facing employees.
  • Sales Enablement — Capture and measure RC being earned internally between your sales and marketing teams or other cross-functional cooperation that enables revenue and profit growth.
  • Alliance Partners — Capture and measure the RC being earned between alliance partners
  • Marketing Campaigns: Have a third-party validate the RC being earned with potential and existing clients/customers.
  • Greater Employee Engagement — Reward employees with RC for kept-commitments and positive perceptions from their teammates during the entire year and not just with their manager once a year.
  • Professional Development/Coaching — Reward Employees with RC for keeping professional development commitments. Also, Capture and Measure the Coach or Mentor’s RC with the employee mentee and/or other stakeholders.
  • Attract & Retain Top Talent — The best and the brightest want to work for a firm of high purpose, integrity, and commitment.

In this uncertain business world, there is no doubt as business leaders transform their organization’s with Relationship Capital (RC) purpose, principles, process, and measurement, there will be new innovative ways to utilize RC that supports opportunities as well as threats to the business organization and its greater ecosystem.

Introducing The Credibility Reliability Index (CRI)

The Credibility Reliability Index (CRI) is a measurement that was developed as part of the Peer SaaS or PE-ER platform to establish a basis for understanding trust and focus on being trustworthy. The basic premise is, the more commitments you successfully keep the more reliable you will be and hence more trustworthy.

Therefore, it’s really quite simple. The higher the Credibility Reliability Index score, the more reliable the individual or company is to deliver on their commitments- the lower the score, the less reliable they are.

As a guideline the Credibility Reliability Index figure is calculated as a combination of:

  • The number of commitments you met or exceeded on the timeline,
  • The number of commitments that you missed delivery on,
  • The total number of points available for commitments requested
  • The feedback scores received on all completed commitments

So it’s not simply a case of recording how many commitments you make — it’s much more comprehensive than that and the data is constantly updated.

It’s Not The End, But The Beginning

To create and sustain your competitiveness in this world of accelerating change and uncertainty requires your team to see the opportunities as well as threats coming up them and proactively respond. Customers will not wait for you to develop the perfect business strategy, operating model, and/or launch the perfect technology platform when they want to make a decision.

Your organizational culture must be smart, fast, and proactively act with good intent in the best interests of the customer/client and all your stakeholders. Your products/services must be at the right place at the right time in the customer’s decision-making journey. Part of the answer in distinguishing your company culture is to:

  • Attract star performing customers & clients that will attract the attention and respect from other customers.
  • Earn respect of credible thought leaders and brand ambassadors who will share your story and recommend you.
  • Attract the star performing employees who share their high purpose and mastery with your organizational purpose to create amazing experiences not only with the customer & client, but also throughout your entire ecosystem of partners, and suppliers.

As you can see, today’s competitive battles are less about business entity versus business entity, and more about business ecosystem versus business ecosystem. This is a more peer-to-peer relationship that requires your business and your team to behave as a standard of trust based on shared purpose and values. Your stakeholders are watching.

As more and more business leaders influence and shape their business cultures to adopt higher standards of purpose, mastery, and relationship capital trust, standing still will no longer be an option for the laggards. As more examples of Relationship Capital (RC) businesses flourish in their respective industries, the expectations and demands of your stakeholders will continue to rise. There is no end game, just a continuous journey of distinction through purpose, mastery and relationship capital.

The competitive battles leveraging business culture for sustainable advantage in an uncertain world have only just begun. If you’re going to try to build a high performing organizational culture, go all the way and earn relationship capital credibility because leadership itself is on the line today.


Originally Published on July 30th, 2016 on Linkedin Pulse