build up your trust bank

So, why is deep trust so important in a team and critical to getting results? Trust is a key part of our social contract with one another.  It makes our interactions go more quickly and smoothly.  When we trust, we don’t have to question the other’s intent, or deal with fine print.

Based on Stephen MR Covey’s work, two conditions are necessary for building trust – Character and Credibility.  Do you have integrity and good intentions?  And, are you capable of delivering results?  This last piece of the puzzle, credibility, is pretty important.  It gets to your ability to do the job, to your capabilities to deliver.  Overpromising without delivering degrades trust.

Trust is built one step, one commitment, one fulfilled promise at a time.  Trust is essential for others to give us increasing responsibility.

Trusting relationships with our teammates, our partners, and with ourselves support our continued growth.  These are deposits we make to relationship “trust banks.”

Covey offers several very practical ways in which we can build up our trust banks, improve our credibility with others, and hence their trust in us:

  • Make sure people know where you stand – tell your truth
  • No hidden agendas
  • Apologize & make restitution when you need to
  • Acknowledge the work of others
  • Be results focused – get the right stuff done
  • Be a lifelong learner
  • Be a courageous leader in conversation by acknowledging what is just under the surface that others are afraid to mention
  • Clarify and re-clarify expectations
  • Do what you say you’re going to do
  • Extend trust to others as they earn your trust

    The team who has mutually supporting and trusting relationships with each other will inevitably be more successful in reaching their goals than one with poor trust relationships.

    Clearly, teams are messy and sometimes complicated relationships.  The more you and your teammates have built up your trust banks with each other, the easier it will be to work through the messiness.

    Next time we’ll talk about building a culture that is comfortable in challenging one another, and how to do it in a way that builds each other up.

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