Love. Trust. Respect

Building Strong Relationships: The Power of Love, Trust, and Respect

In order to effectively accomplish anything that God has placed in our hearts, there is the prerequisite of assembling a team. Through the years, I have learned that building a strong ministry team requires intentionality and a few essential components. Building teams is a “pay to play” endeavor! While there are various tools that can be discussed in regards to building teams, I will deal with three that I see as paramount: love, trust, and r-e-s-p-e-c-t (Rest well, Queen).

The most profound definition of love was introduced to me 12 years ago while being discipled at Youth With A Mission in Tyler, TX. Love is intentionally choosing someone’s highest good. I believe that this is the least costly expectation of which a leader can assume from their team.

The obvious personal goal of a leader is to act and lead in the most loving way possible. In doing so, you are modeling to your team how to love you and others well. A couple of questions to consider:
  1. Are you leading in a such a way that your team feels that you are genuinely concerned about and committed to their highest good?
  2. Have you gone out of your way to know their love language and details about their lives?

Trust & Respect

To be trusted and respected by your team comes at a slightly higher price than love. While I realize these are two different traits, I think they are so tightly tethered that they can be dealt with as one for the purposes of this blog. Here are three actions to create and grow trust & respect amongst your team:

  1. Be Consistent. A former youth leader of mine shared this statement after a powerful night of youth ministry: “Consistency breeds credibility” (thanks Tyler Hill). No one respects or lends trusts to a leader who appears unstable and inconsistent. Consistency is not sexy in our culture—especially amongst millennials, but it is a timeless trait that is paramount within the kingdom of God. Coupled with dependable actions is a whispering voice conveying this truth, “You can really trust me.”
    • Do you bail at the last minute on the regular basis?
    • Are you constantly canceling meetings or appointments?
    • Would you be described as “consistently inconsistent?”
  2. Pay the Price. Few young leaders realize that there is a price to be paid in order to secure these quintessential qualities in the hearts of their team members. Nine years ago, I sat in the living room of the incomparable Jeanne Mayo (i.e. “America’s Youth Pastor”) where she, by way of illustration and unrivaled passion, imparted to a small group of youth pastors the idea that we must earn the right to lead and influence others. Nothing dismantles the spirit of entitlement like a realization that your team does not owe you trust and respect…until they are earned!
    • What area do you need to pay a higher price to earn trust & respect among your team?
    • Have you given sacrificially of your time and energy to anyone for an extended period?
    • Can anyone personally attest to you going “above and beyond” when it comes to shepherding & pouring into your people?
  3. Work Hard. If there is anything that robs a young leader of respect & trust, it is behavior that demonstrates laziness and apathy. For several summers after my senior year of high school, I had the honor of serving as a counselor at the esteemed Louisiana Boy’s State Program. Amongst other tasks, it was my responsibility to oversee my floor within the dorms which meant I literally had to be the last one to bed (typically 2:00am) and the first one up (5:30am). Amongst the myriad of leadership principles I gained each summer that has never eluded me, there is one that towers above them all: NEVER ask those whom you are leading to work harder than you!
    • Is it overwhelmingly obvious to your team that you are working harder than them?
    • Would your team be able to use your work ethic as a guide?
    • Can you ask and receive honest feedback by posing the question, “Do I appear lazy?” to your team?
Loving people well, being consistent, paying the price, and working hard are but the beginnings of building the team that is necessary for you to accomplish the various assignments of God on your life. Think through how you are doing in these areas and trust the Holy Spirit to highlight the areas that need strengthening in your leadership! Let’s build teams intentionally so we can accomplish assignments effectively! Feel free to leave a comment outlining other traits you deem important in leading a healthy and effective team!
Showing 19 comments
  • Shyrece

    Yes. Yes. Yes. It’s painfully difficult to follow a leader who lacks these qualities. The fulltime workforce has been a surprising reality because department heads and supervisors typically lead with a sense of entitlement, producing a poor work environment. This is so good. Book? Curriculum? Yes? 🙂

    • Brandon Cormier

      Shyrece, you are as sharp as they come and any leader who does not recognize the treasure in you is sorely lacking! thanks for the thoughts–and yes, those resources will come forth…if you promise to be my chief editor! 😉

  • Josiah Javier

    Wow. “Nothing dismantles the spirit of entitlement like a realization that your team does not owe you trust and respect…until they are earned!” That one hits HARD. When I look back at the most impactful leaders in my life, they are leaders who EARNED my trust and respect. Relationship is the key, but DEVELOPED relationship is the door, and even then the knob to turn is on THEIR side! Love, love, love this Pastor Brandon!

    • Brandon Cormier

      Excellent thoughts, Josiah! You are a great leader in the making. I can’t wait to see what comes out of your heart and ministry as you pastor youth and love people well!

  • Augustine Mendoza

    Great post, Pastor Brandon! It is so important, as you said, that one works hard in ministry. Hard work always garners a respect level, but also sets a standard of excellence for your team. I can’t wait to keep reading these posts!

    • Brandon Cormier

      I think that some millennials and older gen z students have an underappreciation for consistency and hard work. This is, indeed, the “microwave” generation. As leaders, we must set the standard and pave the way!

  • Julie Giordano

    I love this word Pastor Brandon!

    There is such a profound message in your mouth that overflows the love in your heart for people, because you choose to see them.

    Leaders must love with everything in them – on purpose – with a passion to invest in the life of another and if not, the leader will fail miserably. Because you can only give out of your overflow for so long until you become resentful.

    A strong foundation of God’s love will sustain you and remind you of your yes!!!

    So bottom line, trust and respect will come as you consistently love and invest in them.

    Love tears down the walls…
    Consistency builds trust…
    Investing the truth of God’s Word and principles builds respect…
    Taking the time to see them for who they are validates they are worthy.

    I look forward to following your blog and purchasing all the books that are yet to come!!!

    • Brandon Cormier

      First, what a breathtaking writer you are. I concur with everything that you stated and wish I could have been as concise as you: “Love tears down the walls…consistency builds trust..” So very good. Thanks for being my number one support and a profound voice of wisdom in my life for over 16 years now Ms. Julie! And I receive those words!

  • Shelby

    Wow! The thought of going above and beyond and having a great work ethic is ESSENTIAL to leading a committed team! It also seems to be the opposite of what our generation expects when they lead; we can lean more toward wanting to be served rather than serving. But Jesus was the servant of all while being called “Master” because of all of the things you stated: He loved and earned the trust and respect of His disciples. Great read! Excited for more!

    • Brandon Cormier

      Very good points, Shelby. Each of us possesses the default of “wanting to be served” as opposed to serving! Thanks for the interaction and feedback.

  • Abe Bahranipoor

    Wow Brandon! This really does hit to the core. I think I’ve been on both sides and seen amazing leadership and not so great. I’ve also been both leaders admittedly. But just simply asking questions similar to this helped me change my leadership years ago and the effect it had on those “underneath” me changed the entire dynamic of the workplace in the best way. Great post man!

    • Brandon Cormier

      Abe, it takes real humility when one admits that they have been both “amazing” and “not so great” in the leadership arena! I echo the same sentiments! I agree that posing the questions moves one much farther along the leadership spectrum than what we often realize. Thanks for the interaction!

  • Jade Giordano

    Having been under your leadership for many years I can honestly say you are writing these truths from a place of experience. There’s nothing like gleaning from someone who has put the years of practice into what they are saying & encouraging others to do. In my short years of leading, I’ve integrated a lot from how you have led me. Thank you for not only telling us how to lead but being the real deal yourself. I honor you & love you!

    • Brandon Cormier

      That is so encouraging to hear. You have been a leader in the making since your junior high years of loving people well. You are in such a great season of earning trust and sharpening your gifts while at Bethel School of Supernatural Ministry! Blessings!!

  • Tazmin Ivey

    The consistency in your life ministry, over the last 14+ years I’ve known you have been such an inspiration and, more importantly, a call to arms for myself and our other brothers in the faith to pursue, and lead with, integrity, love, and faithfulness.

    Honor was always given, respect was always the approach, and genuine love was always felt in every ministry moment I’ve experienced personally or witnessed as a third party.

    It’s your consistency, in my opinion, that gives weight to these words. Kudos to any leader, millennial and beyond, who heeds the heart of this message.

    Much love to you and keep ‘em coming!!

    • Brandon Cormier

      Thank you, Tazmin. You are a statesman when it comes to modeling faith as a husband, father, and leader in the local church, so your words are very weighty to me, my friend. Consistency really does add “weight” to anyone’s words, doesn’t it? I think that many younger millennials undervalue the power of consistency because it requires TIME! I appreciate the feedback. Thanks!

  • Tim Twigg

    Good word my friend! “Are you leading in such a way that your team feels that you are genuinely concerned about and committed to their highest good?” I believe that is the basis for everything you said after. If I can’t believe you are committed to my highest good the rest of it loses believability. Love it!

    • Brandon Cormier

      Thanks, Pastor Tim! What are 1 or 2 ways you practically demonstrate to those serving under you that you are committed to their highest good? You definitely do this very well–I have observed first hand!

      • Tim Twigg

        I verbally tell them, “I care more about who you are than what you do.” Far too often we value others only when they give us something we desire. But what happens when they aren’t able to give us anything at all? Are we still willing to pursue them relationally? This isn’t limited to results or objects. It can also be a “feeling” that others give us, which left unchecked, can be dysfunctionally pride driven.