Trust.  It underpins relationships.  It is the basis for successful relationships.

I have recently been working with a group of teams who are developing how they will work together as one team.  One of the key behaviours they defined was to build trust between them all.  This returned me to the Trust Equation.

There are four elements in the Trust Equation.  Credibility.  What we say, our skills and qualifications, and how others experience our expertise.  Reliability.  How predictable and dependable we are.  Intimacy.  Our ability to maintain confidentiality and demonstrate empathy.  Lastly, self-orientation.  This is where trust can be destroyed if our self-orientation is focused on ourselves rather than others.

Recently, my trust in two large national organisations has been eroded.  I am a customer of these organisations yet there are employees within those organisations, who I will most likely never see face to face, who took actions which impacted on me negatively.  For me, their level of focus on their customer and the impact of their actions on fellow employees, appears to be very low.  They will never have to face me yet people in my location do even though they are not responsible for the actions of others.  This happens in large organisations all the time.

The current climate in business is that it is very hard to find employees.  I have heard stories of people not receiving any applications at all for vacant positions.  Then when applications are received, they are nowhere near qualified or have the experience required.  This inevitably leads to hiring in desperation which means we don’t always have the right people in the position.  Can this impact on trust within your teams and your business?  Absolutely.  Will that flow on to your customers?  Most definitely.

There are steps you can take to remove the risk of Team Members and customers losing trust in you and your business.  It will take time and effort but that investment is worth it in the long run.

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