On the recommendation of Suzanne Massie, an American author who played an important role in the relations between Ronald Reagan and the Soviet Union in the final years of the Cold War, President Regan adopted and frequently used the term “trust, but verify”. This term enjoyed a second round of notoriety while the Defense Threat Reduction Agency looked for weapons of mass destruction in Iraq under the Bush Administration. A distant cousin of “if you want something done right, you must do it yourself” this policy, when done right, can also serve as a working model for delegating certain responsibilities. This is especially true when working with “experts” who can substantiate their experience and ability.
The biggest challenge for most is trust. Of course it can be difficult to find the “right” people – ones we can truly trust.
But trust is also a decision – a skill we can develop.
There are people out there who know what they are doing, are committed to their work and who produce value.
If we wish to get more done, make more money or produce greater value, we must learn to trust and then (and perhaps more importantly), we must develop the skill of meticulous verification.
This is not just some silly political slogan. When done right it can be a very powerful tool.