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59 Inspiring quotes about trust and leadership

Trust and leadership are the two key elements that determine a successful organization. Without trust, nothing is ever accomplished, and without strong leadership, nothing gets done. That’s why it’s so important to have both in every workplace. To help you understand the importance of trust and leadership we've compiled 59 inspiring quotes from some of history's most influential leaders on the importance of trusting others and having motivation for taking action – whatever your life or career ambition might be. We hope these words truly inspire you to reach your goals with determination, faith, dedication, and teamwork!


1. "A great leader creates trust and inspires loyalty among those who follow." - Abraham Lincoln

2. "The good leader is a servant first and a leader second." - Ronald Reagan

3. "Leadership is doing what is right, not what is popular." - Lao Tzu

4. "Great things are not done by impulse, but by a series of small things brought together." - Vincent Van Gogh

5. "A leader is one who knows the way, goes the way, and shows the way." - John C. Maxwell

6. "Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal; nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong mental attitude." - Thomas Jefferson

7. “Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower” – Steve Jobs

8. “You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face” – Eleanor Roosevelt

9. “It takes a great deal of courage to stand up to your enemies, but just as much to stand up to your friends” – Albert Einstein

10. “The best leaders lead from within” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

11. “Leadership should be based on inspiration, not domination; on cooperation rather than intimidation” – Dwight D Eisenhower

12. “Good leaders never set out to be a leader…they set out to make a difference" - Unknown

13. “Trust is built when someone is vulnerable and not taken advantage of” – Unknown

14. “Leadership does not always wear the harness of compromise”– Unknown

15. “No person can be a great leader unless he takes genuine joy in the successes of those under him" - W J Bryan

16. “The task of leadership is not to put greatness into people, but to elicit it, for the greatness already lies within them" – Bethany Hamilton

17. “A true leader has faith in his ability even if no one else does" – Nick Vujicic

18. "Leaders must be close enough to relate to others, but far enough ahead to motivate them"– John Maxwell

19. "A successful leader understands that trust needs to be earned before it can be given"– Unknown

20. "A leader knows when it's time for change: when staying put means falling behind"– Unknown

21 .” Leaders aren't born they are made, and they are made just like anything else: through hard work"– Vince Lombardi

22 .” Great leaders don't tell people how it should be done; they show them how it could be done better"– Unknown

23. "The most effective way to inspire people to higher levels of performance is by example"– John C Maxwell

24 .” A good leader listens first before speaking out loud"– Protagoras

25 .” To lead effectively you have to have faith in yourself and belief in others"– Sun Tzu

26 .” People don't care how much you know until they know how much you care"– Theodore Roosevelt

27 .” True leadership lies in guiding others to positive goals rather than showing them which path to take"- Ken Blanchard

28 ."Creating an atmosphere of trust and mutual respect is essential for any team or organization"- Stephen Covey

29 ."If we want all members of our organization to have the freedom to innovate then we have to set expectations for positive behaviors and build trusting relationships"- Robert Kiyosaki

30 ."If your actions inspire them to get involved in their dreams and inject passion into their lives you are an effective leader"- Simon Sinek

31. “Leadership is a potent combination of strategy and character. But if you must be without one, be without the strategy.” – Norman Schwarzkopf

32. “The key to successful leadership today is influence, not authority.” – Kenneth Blanchard

33. “Trust is the glue of life. It’s the most essential ingredient in effective communication. It’s the foundational principle that holds all relationships.” – Stephen Covey

34. “Leadership is about making others better as a result of your presence and making sure that impact lasts in your absence.” – Sheryl Sandberg

35. “A leader is best when people barely know he exists, when his work is done, his aim fulfilled, they will say: we did it ourselves.” – Lao Tzu

36. “Leadership is solving problems. The day soldiers stop bringing you their problems is the day you have stopped leading them." - Colin Powell

37. "He who trims himself to suit everyone will soon whittle himself away." - Raymond Hull

38. "If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more, and become more, you are a leader." - John Quincy Adams

39."To lead people to walk behind them." - Lao Tzu

40."Trust starts with truth and ends with truth."- Santosh Kalwar

41."The growth and development of people is the highest calling of leadership." - Harvey Firestone

42."A leader takes people where they want to go; A great leader takes people where they don't necessarily want to go but ought to be" – Rosalynn Carter

43."Leadership should be born out of the understanding of the needs of those who would be affected by it"– Marian Anderson

44."Leadership requires the courage to make decisions that will benefit the next generation"– Alan Autry

45. "The greatest leader is not necessarily the one who does the greatest things, but the one who gets people to do the greatest things." – Ronald Reagan

46. "Building trust with others is one of the most important things a leader can do.” - Richard Branson

47. “The only thing a genuine leader can give is an example; and the most effective example demands no words.” – John Wooden

48. “Great people talk about ideas, average people talk about themselves, and small people talk about others." – Anonymous

49. "Failure of leadership is often the result of too much caution or too little courage." – Thomas Sowell

50. “Be a good example in everything you do so that others may follow in your footsteps.” - Anonymous

51. “The most important thing a leader must learn is to listen." - Richard Branson

52. “Leadership skills are acquired through directed study and practice in real-life situations.” - Anonymous

53. "A genuine leader is not a searcher for consensus but a moulder of consensus." - Martin Luther King Jr

54. "Political leadership involves working with complex relationships among individuals and groups to achieve common goals" - Abraham Maslow

55. “Employee engagement can be improved by cultivating trust within an organization's culture" – Steve Jobs


56. “Effective action comes from making decisions based on facts, not fear." – Oprah Winfrey

57. "An act of trust changes lives; it builds bridges between people and creates hope for what was once thought impossible." – Dalai Lama XIV

58. "Leadership function requires vision, courage, integrity and humility all at once" — Subroto Bagchi

59 .“Leadership quotes will always inspire you when it looks like no one else will to keep going" - Stephen Covey


Today’s world is full of challenges and people can find themselves lost in the mire of negativity. Leadership, trust, and courage are essential tools to help guide us through these turbulent times. It takes the right combination of knowledge, skill, and character to be an effective leader. When we look at great leaders such as Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King Jr., Michael Jordan, Seth Godin, John C Maxwell, Jack Welch, George Patton, Colin Powell, Booker T Washington and Warren Bennis we know that there must be something special about them all that sets them apart from the rest.


With so much demand on our time and with so many pressures from society it is easy to forget what true leadership is really about. We may read quotes from these great leaders but sometimes it can feel like a far off concept that is difficult to grasp. That is why I want to share 50 inspiring quotes about trust and leadership which I hope will give you a better understanding of this important subject.


Leadership often boils down to one simple thing – setting an example for others to follow. As John Maxwell said “Everything rises and falls on leadership” demonstrating how important leaders are in shaping the course of events in any organization or team. Without strong leadership small matters can become big ones quickly leading to failure or stagnation.

Mutual trust between team members is also fundamental for any successful team effort where everyone works together toward a common goal without fear or hesitation. As Mahatma Gandhi said “Trust yourself first and then you will be able to trust others” emphasizing that true leadership starts with believing in oneself before expecting others to do the same.


The essence of leadership comes down to having equal parts character and courage as Warren Bennis famously said “Leaders have the courage to make decisions that will benefit the greater good” showing his unwavering commitment for building teams based on trust rather than fear or manipulation tactics.


These are just some words of wisdom from some of history’s greatest leaders that demonstrate not only how important being a trustworthy leader is but also how critically important it is in times like these when so much depends on each individual taking action within their own circles of influence towards creating lasting change in their own communities and beyond.


It’s no secret that trust and leadership go hand in hand. When you have a great leader, you know that you can trust them to do the right thing. Building effective trust is essential to any successful relationship, be it personal or professional, and strong leadership is key to achieving that.


When it comes to inspiring words on the subject of trust and leadership, few people can rival the former president Dwight D. Eisenhower: “Only one thing is harder than to do the right thing - not doing it”. This serves as an important reminder that good leaders always stay true to their values and principles, even when faced with difficult decisions. Similarly, Booker T. Washington famously said “You measure the greatness of a man not by how much he has but by how much he gives” – a reminder that great leaders are prepared to make sacrifices for those they lead.


Brian Tracy provides another piece of insight: “The best way to influence people is with a good example”. This speaks directly to the importance of setting a positive example for others – something which all successful leaders must strive for if they want their team to trust them and follow their guidance. But perhaps most important of all is being genuine – something which individuals like Mahatma Gandhi exemplified during his life and work: “Be truthful, gentle, and fearless”; qualities which are incredibly valuable when leading a group of people.


So what's the first step towards becoming an effective leader? It begins with understanding your own strengths and weaknesses, as well as learning from both successes and failures of past leaders. Additionally, gaining knowledge on topics such as communication skills, emotional intelligence and problem solving will help equip you with some of the most essential traits needed for successful leadership today!

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