A Recipe For Trust

Beverly Inman-Ebel Ingredients:

Thinking. The first ingredient in creating trust is to think before you speak. Introverts are better at this than extroverts. When we speak quickly or spontaneously, or as we often say at TLC, “think out loud,” our message may not come out as intended. Perhaps you have been surprised at a blooper that came out of your mouth in the past. Especially when we are speaking to a person who we are somewhat unfamiliar with, we need to think before we speak. It doesn’t take that long; three seconds is a lot of think time for our brains. When you are giving tough messages, such as corrections, think first and you will find a better way to say it.

Respect. The person you are striving to establish trust with may be quite different from you. You do not have to agree with their differences, yet you do need to accept their right to think, act, look, and speak differently. Being different does not make them better or worse, it just adds variety – like spice. There is more than one way to accomplish something. To demonstrate respect, listen first. The other person just may say something that creates a new idea or attitude within you.

Understanding. To understand a point of view, it is necessary to momentarily set aside what you already know. Your own thoughts can get I the way of understanding what the other person means. Remind yourself to open up the possibilities when you are receiving new information. Once you can restate in your own words what you think the other person is saying, and they agree with your restatement, then you have accomplished understanding. Now, add it to what you knew before and see how your perception has changed.

Sincerity. No matter how well you listen, the thought you place in your comments, or how many good questions you ask to gain understanding and demonstrate respect, these must be delivered with sincerity. Body language and vocal tone are the base ingredients of sincerity. Moving slowly and lowering your pitch, volume, and rate will increase the perception that you mean what you say.

Time. This ingredient is what yeast is to bread. Know that approximately 54% of the population in the United States requires time for the trust to rise. Invest in relationships. Under-promise and over-deliver. Do what you say you will do. Follow through. Get into the details. Slow down. Exhale. The great equalizer is time because we all have 24 hours today. How we spend that time is a choice. Choose to spend it wisely and you will build trust in others.

You may notice that the amount of each ingredient was not specified. Use as much as you need to gain the final result that you seek. Mix well with effective communication to achieve trust.

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