Don’t Let Lying Trap You

“Oh, what a tangled web we weave. When first we practice to deceive!” – Sir Walter Scott, Marmion


Patrick, Sales Manager for a provider of heating, ventilation and air conditioning service told Session 5B of Turbo’s Leadership Development Lab:

“In January of 2014, I was working for a pest control company in Portland. One of my clients paid us $2500 to place 100 rat traps in their building. A week later, the customer complained that our company had only caught one rat.

“I went to the customer’s location to see if I could understand why we had only caught one rat after seven days. I looked high and low and I could only find 4 rat traps that our company had placed in the whole building. I called our technician and asked him how many traps he had placed. He repeatedly refused to answer my question. Finally, after refusing to accept no for an answer, he told me he had only placed 4 traps! I have to admit, that made me pretty angry. I had sold my clients services only to find out later that my company hadn’t delivered the services we had promised.

“I get really angry when people I should be able to trust violate that trust by lying to me. It is the most infuriating when it is someone in my family or my own company that I want to be able to trust. I lost a great deal of respect for that person and could not trust them again. Rebuilding, regaining my trust requires that they prove, over an extended period of time, that they had learned their lesson and are now trustworthy. I may not show it outwardly, but it is one of the things that makes me the most angry.


“The lesson I learned from this experience is to always employ Leadership Principle #1 ‘Lead From High Ideals‘ – keep my word, always tell the truth. I know how I feel when someone fails to keep their promises, keep their word and then continues to lie to me about it.

“The action I call you to take is to think about how you feel when you realize you can’t trust someone. Make sure you are not the person who can’t be trusted. Make it your practice to ‘Lead From High Ideals,’ tell the whole truth, even when it is uncomfortable.

“The benefit you will gain is you will keep the respect and trust of the people you live and work with and you will have the richness that comes from treasured, trusted relationships.”

The world is looking for leaders they can trust, leaders who will keep their word and deliver on their promises. When someone fails repeatedly to keep their word, continues to break promises, we may even refer to them as a rat fink. Never let it be said of you.


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