Trust 用人不疑, 疑人不用

Inspired by Weiling (

"用人不疑, 疑人不用"


An online friend Wei Ling posted this on her MSN tag about 2 weeks ago.

In case you are not a Chinese, the eight letters above literally translate into:

“Use people with trust, if you lack trust in a person, don’t use.”


Trust is something that is very sensitive when placed into an “Employer-Employee” context.

After all, most local companies operate with trust, trust in their employees. Entrusted with responsibilities at different levels, trust became the main bridge linking the employer & employees. Let’s not go too deep into the details, rather, let’s look at the Sales aspect of the company.

Most sales professionals understand that this profession involves an extremely high level of discipline. For a simple reason, sales people spent a considerable amount of time outside office. Some will call it “time without jurisdiction” while others simply calls it “no government”. After all, no bosses will want to plant a GPS device on their stuff or radomly video-call the staff once every other hour right?

How I wish I can do that.

It is not that I do not trust my staff, I tried to. In the past, I always tell myself that these people are adults, and they can be trusted. After all, they managed to convince me enough to employ them. But things are not what I had imagined to be.


In the past, I’ve had staff that pretends to be very busy in the office, then when they left office, they head straight not to clients’ offices but to coffee joints. Then, there are those who arrange to meet their friends (most likely from sales too) and went shopping together. Throughout my career, I’ve caught staff red-handed for skiving. Once there was an incident where I called a particular staff and asked him where he was. He replied that he was still at a client’s office. Still on the line, I walked up and tap on his shoulder, he was queuing at a McDonald’s and I was 3 persons behind him.

How to trust this person again?

Another incident is where a staff did not show up for work in the morning, so I gotten a manager to call him but to no avail, then a SMS came in. This staff claimed that he had an early appointment with a client and he will not be reporting back to office. By instinct, I got the same manager to call this client to verify, and this client denies having made or requested a meeting with the said staff.

How to trust this person again?


Recalling, there is also another staff whom always claimed that he tried really hard but results does not shows the effort. In sales, Law of Averages rules. So how hard has he tried? I asked him this question and he told “very hard”. As his boss, I started to offer him leads, call-in & email enquiries. But, after a month, things remained unchanged. So I tried another method. One day, when he was supposedly leaving the office for an appointment, I stopped him in his track and asked him if I can follow him to his sales appointment. His first reaction? A pale face and stutter something about the client did not gave him a definitive time to meet and so on. I told him, in that case, I will (still) go with him, if there’s a need to wait, I wait with him. And off we go.

When we reached the vicinity of his client’s office, I located a café nearby and we went there to have a coffee and wait. Hours passed. I saw him sending SMS every other minute so I asked; “Still can’t get client?” He shook his head.

A couple of hours passed again then I noticed that his head was hung low and his forehead was sweating a river. That day was a cool day so sensing something was wrong, I asked him if anything was wrong. Like a Pandora box that was opened by mistake, he decided to come clean and share with me that he had not been calling any client for over 2 months and he did not know how to tell me. He had been spending lots of time at home playing games. He then confessed about his addiction to pc games and how he been returning home during office hours to satify his addiction. After we returned to the office, he handed me his resignation letter.

How to trust this person again?


The above are just some examples of how trust given to a staff was abused and misused. How to trust the very same people, whom you interview, placed professional trust on them only to end up having the same people pulling off a stunt like this to you?

Like what Wei Ling had said, the next time if I have suspicions on any staff, I’d rather let the person go.

Extreme right?

I won’t do it. Just kidding.

If you are in sales and rading this, well, my advice is, don’t abuse the trust given to you by your boss.

He could be standing behind you at McDonald’s while calling you.

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4 thoughts on “Trust 用人不疑, 疑人不用

  1. My rule: Trust no one 100%. 要有所保留,万分之一页号。T R U S T : All it takes an absence of a T and it comes R U S T.

  2. 这句话我常用,也是老板们最适合听的一句话。先给别人机会,再给别人信心,最后再加信任!

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