The Lexicon of Trust Building

The most serious ongoing challenge to building trust and ensuring positive relationships with customers, allies, colleagues, government, employees, and relatives is establishing trust.  It is easier to recognize the patterns of those behaviors and attitudes that damage trust and bring credibility into question. Trust is a fragile magical substance like the lignin in trees, nature’s glue that holds the tree fiber together, Trust is what holds relationships together.  Trust is the most fragile and vulnerable agent in a relationship.

Here is the Lexicon of Trust Building ingredients. The more you use, the greater the trust level.

  • Apology: The atomic energy of empathy. Apologies can stop bad things from starting and start to stop bad things. Even with extraordinary injury and harm, a prompt apology, taking responsibility for some egregious, injuring act or decision, tends to detoxify bad situations. I truly believe that apologies are always on time. However, experience shows that the earlier the apology, the more powerful its effect.
  • Candor: Truth with an attitude delivered right now. Truth plus the facts, truth plus some perspective, truth that reflects the value of other’s observations.
  • Credibility: Always conferred by others on those whose past behavior, track record, and accomplishments warrant it.
  • Empathy: Actions that speak louder than words ever can. (No PR needed)
  • Forgiveness: In those cases where someone has harmed you or those things you care about, often the hardest action to take is moving on and finding ways to help the perpetrator move on as well.
  • Integrity: Uncompromising adherence to a code of values by people, products, and companies, with the attributes of credibility, candor, sincerity, and truth.
  • Sympathy: The ongoing, often continuous, verbalization of regret, embarrassment, or personal humiliation, promptly conveyed, i.e., feeling truly sorry for someone who is experiencing pain, but stopping short of taking on the blame or the pain.
  • Trust: Generally, the absence of fear, the feeling of reliability. The knowledge that adverse situations, pain, or mistakes have less impact or can be pre-empted if a trusting relationship exists or can be built.
  • Add your own. Please.
Whenever there is or can be fear, uncertainty, or doubt, always move towards trust.