Trust is a lot like a bank account. When you make regular deposits in it your balance builds up. When you make a withdrawal, you need to be sure that you have sufficient trust to cover the transaction.
We all occasionally make trust withdrawals – we miss a commitment, we lose our temper, we are disrespectful, or we are less than candid. Even though our trust balance drops during these episodes, it is our long-term, consistent trust behavior deposits help us withstand the occasional misstep.
Building a healthy trust balance depends on your ability to consistently
- Follow through with commitments
- Be candid and honest
- Show respect
- Manage your emotions
- Stay calm under crisis
- Take responsibility for your actions
- Acknowledge and own your mistakes
Analyze your trust account!
Try the following approach:
- Make two columns: Label one “Trust Deposits” and one “Trust Withdrawals.”
- Review your previous week’s experiences, listing meetings, interactions, email responses and other communications.
- For each event, identify your actions, reactions and behaviors.
- Identify whether your behavior is a Deposit or Withdrawal and write it down under the appropriate column.
- Review your final list and assess the health level of your trust account. How in balance are you?
What can you do to increase the value of your trust account?
Select the one or two trust behaviors in your “withdrawal” column that make the biggest impact on your relationships. (For example, anger outbursts or blaming are high trust breakers). Commit to replacing trust withdrawal behaviors with behaviors that will rebuild your trust account. (For example, staying calm during a crisis and showing appreciation adds to your trust account.) Demonstrate those behaviors for the next 21 days to create a habit. The result? You build a trust account that will sustain you and reap dividends for you in the future!