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  -  Leadership   -  How to Rebuild Trust When Trust – Has Been Lost

I have written a rather short post on this within my LinkedIn sales training channel, and have included that here. In that post, I took a synopsis of a lecture I gave to some hospitality students coming into a post-pandemic world. They had followed a glorious career path, with promise of travel, high social engagement, exciting times and incredible destinations – to now find 90+% unemployment in their chosen world. I add this as context – not as an excuse.
Here were the 10 points I took from a single paragraph in information, and will dive deeper into each below.

  1. Trust lasts longer – the longer it is built, so build it gradually.
  2. Be crystal clear in your commitments,
  3. And then over-deliver on that commitment,
  4. Consistently.
  5. Help everyone openly,
  6. And be honest and transparent about why you do.
  7. Let this be your marketing and promotion,
  8. Which illustrates your values for everyone to see.
  9. Learn to harness your emotions – but never hide them,
  10. And admit when you have made a mistake, as it makes you more believable.

I think the trust that we all want in our live’s is one that is built over time. Not just that it is a stronger and more fulfilling form of trust – but that it would also come from those who we enjoy being around or with. But the second part of this point is that it is built gradually. Not all of us can rush in save a person’s life and benefit from the Nightingale effect – so trust built brick-by-brick will last longer, be stronger, and support more over time – than one large/single element.

The next point is that to be crystal clear in your commitments. Whether this has become more important over time because of how much in-person communication has been replaced by digital communication and digital communication with limited character length – who knows. In our sales training business, we see this in the move from in-person training to online training. In an in-person training – you cannot rush to finish it – the clock manages that for all parties. But in an online training – you can rush to complete it – and in most cases – miss a lot of the context and meaning. The commitment of the training organization and the commitment of the learner have all been blurred – and in many cases – missed.

And then over-deliver on your commitment. This is so important – and yet no one seems to use this as a goal. Weve become a society which is happy when we are not disappointed rather desiring and finding more.

Consistently. Isn’t this one of the most important qualities of everything in our lives? While it is nestled comfortably at the fourth position – you can argue that consistency is the most important quality. For those in service industries – we know this, but rarely is it baked into our strategies as effectively as it should.

Help everyone openly is another important aspect of trust building. As we grow in our “lack of trust of others,” it doesn’t take long for our mind’s to spiral away from trust and think “why should I trust this person?” And it does not take long to validate the lack of trust if you see them being inconsistent with others – especially if those actions are not like what they have said they would do to you. It feeds the “they are only using me” syndrome in the mind.

If you can do this and be honest and transparent about why you doing it – it is a universal key for trust-building. It is like a sign above your door. While a person might not have met you – they have seen your work, usually over time, and the consistency that you apply this approach.

Let this be your marketing and promotion is a simple way of saying that your actions are the best marketing you can buy. For people like me – I cannot offer my courses for free for everyone to test out. I do not have enough of them. But my social presence is open for everyone to examine and to evaluate. If you see my material on a regular basis – you know where I stand. It is social proof in social media.

Which illustrates your values for everyone to see. Whey I put this out there – coupled with the marketing and promotion piece – it can be daunting. You have taken a stand. This stand may be aligned with some and not with others. But it must be aligned with you. Otherwise you will not be consistent in your approach, offers, or results.

Learn to harness your emotions – but never hide them is one of (if not) the hardest on this list. If you can’t be genuine in what you do and how you react – it will surface, and it never surfaces at a good time. The longer it is held back the more pressure it builds. People trust people who have learned to live through their emotions – and not hide them.

And admit when you have made a mistake, as it makes you more believable. One of my mentors once told me to “learn how to make mistakes that help you fail forward.” This statement had its “truth” in that as long as your general focus was in the right direction – so to would your mistakes be headed. The more open you are about your mistakes – the more people will trust you. It is a principle that Ray Dalio helped reinforce with me in his book – Principles.

We can’t correct all of the evils in the world individually but we can mute them as communities which learn how to build and accept trust again.
Trust is major concept which simply takes small steps to build.
And sometimes – baby steps.

Until next time – Stay Optimistic ~