Trust: Why It’s Essential and 6 Ways to Build It
We want to work with people we believe are credible, have confidence in and like. This combination leads to trust.
The more trust others have in you, the greater their investment in you.
Why? Because relationships are transactions, and you are more likely to “do business with” people you trust.
"Trust is the lubrication that makes it possible for organizations to work."
-- Warren Bennis"
Even if you “have to” work with someone, you can “choose to” not work with them by avoiding them, withholding information or an other Territorial Game ( link to Annette Simmons book). There is precious little if any trust in that kind of interactions.
Perhaps you’ve seen this in a toxic workplace?
Trust is More than the Facts
Trust is partially factual and partially emotional. It grows from what people feel about you, what you say, what you do and what they know about you and how you operate.
Yes, you need to do your job. And you need to do something more. Build superior people skills.
Superior people skills are essential for building professional behavior, which creates an environment of courtesy, trust, and corporate commitment. How you focus on key capacities, such as communication and relationship development skills can make or break you.
Good Relationships Require Trust
At all stages of your career and in all levels of an organization you work with a diverse and large-body of people, within and outside of your office. That alone makes forging trust and working relationships a challenge. That is further complicated by two other factors: 1) you are part of intergenerational workforce and; 2) often you do not see all of these people face-to-face.
To forge trust in your relationships with a wide variety of people, try these strategies:
- Take time to gather your thoughts so you speak clearly, succinctly, and in a way that others understand
- Look at the situation from other people’s point of view
- Reinforce your goals and objectives while respectfully acknowledging those of others
Communicating Well Builds Trust
Communication is a key factor in building trust. You must consistently communicate about your work, process and at times your results and how those impact shared interests. Because change is constant you must also be comfortable (or figure out how get comfortable) communicating about changes with people all organizational levels, and with various backgrounds and ages.
To communicate well with a diverse body of people, try these 3 strategies:
- Show a genuine interest in addressing and resolving any issue as quickly as possible
- Listen fully and without judging before you respond or make decisions
- Interact with people to understand their perspectives and determine what you must do to gain their support
Trust Takes Time and Action
Forging trusting relationships takes time. The greater number of people you interact with and how many different types of people they are, usually requires more time than you think. Give yourself and others time needed.
“Trust is built with consistency."
-- Lincoln Chafee.
Be active. Relationship building and communicating are just that, active and require tending to flourish. Keep engaging, pay attention to what is happening and adjust as needed, and overtime you’ll move forward.
Deirdre Danahar is a coach and consultant helping socially conscious organizations, entrepreneurs and professionals cultivate their reputation and profitability by making themselves and their communities better. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.