One of the things that we treasure most here at Classy Llama is trust. We operate as a very close knit team, in an environment that is open, free and flexible. Its an incredibly powerful way to operate, and makes working together a beautiful experience because we don’t waste time on politics or power plays or jockeying for position. Everyone strives for the good of the team and the growth of our clients, and the synergy that is created by that is very powerful.
But maintaining an operating environment like this isn’t easy, and it requires above almost everything else that everyone on the team has a mutual trust and respect for each other. To work in an environment where you are very open, about everything including your faults means that people have more opportunities than they would in many companies to hurt you. If you’re afraid of being damaged by something you say, or by expressing vulnerability in some fashion, you’re going to have a hard time being open.
In order to be open, to really work together, you have to believe in the quality and the intentions of the people around you. If you doubt your team members, if you always have questions in the back of your mind about whether or not they are really working for your best interest and looking out for those around them, then you won’t be able to be open. Instead, you’ll be operating in a very protective fashion. You have to guard yourself because you are the only one who is looking out for you.
The problem with operating in this fashion is that it is inefficient, stressful and a detriment to building a solid team. When everyone in a team concerned with guarding their rear, jockeying for position and making sure that there are no chinks in their armor, they spend more time being cautious and dancing around trying to find the highest ground than they do actually being productive.
The beautiful thing is that here at CLS, we don’t have to do that. We operate in an environment where it is okay to let down your guard because everyone else on the team isn’t a bunch of bloodthirsty piranhas looking for a weak moment to take you out. Instead, everyone here works toward helping everyone else out.
It really is the best way to operate. When you see a weakness in a fellow team member, you don’t jump on them and find a way to exploit the opportunity to make yourself look better. Instead, you strive to help that team member grow. You show them how to be stronger, how to improve, how to better themselves as a worker and a person. You flex as needed to help everyone find the best fit and role for themselves.
When this is the approach that everyone on a team is taking, you don’t have to defend yourself all the time. Instead, you can focus on doing things to really serve people. Here at Classy Llama Studios our goal is to selflessly serve the best interests of the other people on our team and our clients. It sound dangerous, serving selflessly. Doing things without worrying about yourself. But when you have a team of people who believe in trust and growth, who believe in really serving each other, then it really is very safe. Instead of you looking out for you, you have many people looking out for you. Everyone has your back, and you are free to run with the tasks you’ve been given.
Don’t waste time building an organization based on politicking and posturing and protecting yourself. Instead, focus on building a team where you can trust the people around you. Find people to work with who are solid folks, who care about those around them… and then trust them to be who you believe they are! When you can begin to trust the people around and live and work in an environment where people are watching your back for you instead of trying to stab it, you’ll get more done, you’ll be much happier, and ultimately you’ll be free to serve and protect and build up those around you – because you trust the people around you to do the same for you.
Trust is a choice. You can know a lot about a person, but choosing to trust them is an act of your will. It does mean you’re at risk of getting hurt, but if you are willing to trust the quality people around you, you might find yourself beginning to lose the armor, and instead be free to run a little faster, to work a little better and to breathe a little easier. It’s a beautiful thing.