Trust and Growth

I remember picking the white, puffy dandelion off of its stem as a kid and blowing as hard as I could. I heard that if you could get all the puff off with one breath, your wish would come true.

Little did I know that I was sending seeds off into the wind. Their own wishes were hopefully carrying them to fertile soil. A place to put down roots and start growing on their own.

And really, employment is similar to that seed floating on the breeze. Job seekers are in search of a landing spot. A place where they can build trust and grow professionally and personally.


The 2019 Edelman Trust Barometer surveyed over 33,000 people and revealed that when an employer met more of an employee’s expectations, the more trust was built… and that trust grew in strength.

But what are those expectations? The top three were:

  • Job Opportunity – Chances for growth, promotion, and learning that is fulfilling.
  • Personal Empowerment – The culture is inclusive and employees have a voice.
  • Shared Action – There is a greater purpose and a societal impact is possible.
In the graph above, the lighter grey pie slice represents the percentage of respondents that saw this topic as a strong expectation. The red represents the “deal-breaker” group.

With Job Opportunity being the highest ranked expectation, what opportunities should be available?


There’s no reason that this cant be a win-win situation for employers. If they need to build trust by creating growth opportunities, they should focus on growth that is mutually beneficial with a high ROI.

PricewaterhouseCoopers released their 22nd annual CEO survey in 2019, in which they spoke with over 1,300 CEO’s. They asked what soft skills are the most critical. They also asked which skills are getting the hardest to find.

In the top right quadrant (the most critical and the hardest to find) are Leadership, Creativity and Innovation, Problem Solving, and Adaptability. All four of those skills speak to the future of work and the need to keep valued employees nimble and agile to the rapidly changing markets.

As the labor market gets more competitive each month, the winner will be the employers that create growth opportunities. But not just any opportunities, the ones with mutual benefits that meet employee expectations. This will ultimately build trust and drive retention… which has its own cascading affect on the bottom line.

So stop wishing for a more engaged workforce and start creating a place for seeds to land and grow.

Looking for a growth opportunity?

Are you looking for a chance to level-up yourself with or without your employer? Want to build those soft skills that 1,300 plus CEO’s say are the most critical and the hardest to find?

Then consider the altMBA.

As an alumni, I can not speak highly enough of the intense and rewarding experience. You’ll get the most out of it if you commit to it and the ruckus it’s going to make in your life for 30 days. It’s not for everyone, but chances are if you are reading my blog, it’s probably for you. People like us do things like the altMBA.

Go forth and be awesome!

– TD