Something We Control?
“Trust is the one thing that changes everything,” writes Stephen M. R. Covey in his terrific book The Speed of Trust.
Our theme this year at Publishing Concepts is around building trust. This week we are holding our all-company Quarterly Business Meeting and we will be once again reviewing the key drivers of trust.
We learn best, Jim Kwik tells us in his book Limitless, with (1) active recall, i.e. repeatedly quizzing ourselves on what we’ve learned and (2) spaced repetition. With that in mind, let’s do a quick review of some of the key insights we’ve explored previously around trust:
1: Trust is not a fixed trait. Instead, it is something we can build, strengthen, and get better at – even in difficult circumstances.
2: If we want high trust relationships, it starts with being trustworthy. Sounds simple. But focusing on our own trustworthiness is the # 1 thing we can do to boost high-trust relationships in our lives. The key insight? This is something we control.
3: Stephen tells us to be more trustworthy, we must focus on our character and our competence. Both are required. The research shows being virtuous not only makes us more trustworthy, it is also a big driver of long-term happiness. Competence includes our gifts, our skills, our results, and most importantly, our track record. It’s about our ability to make things happen.
4: If we want people to trust us, words are fine but behavior is what counts. In his book, Stephen outlines 13 high trust behaviors. At PCI this year, we selected three behaviors to focus on:
a: Listen first: Our inclination is to talk. Listen first reminds us to pause, to ask questions, to be curious about the other person. Dale Carnegie once said: “You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get other people interested in you.”
b: Make and keep commitments: The #1 strategy to demonstrate competence.
c: Extend trust. The “wise” approach is to make someone earn our trust. We won’t be disappointed. But, this mindset also keeps people at bay. Certainly, we want to use our judgement and extend trust appropriately based on the circumstances and credibility of the people involved. “But have a propensity to trust,” Stephen tells us. “Don’t withhold trust because there is risk involved.”
Reflection: What role does trustworthiness play in my life?
Action: Take note of every time I make a commitment this week. Track it. Take pride in following through. Then, do it again next week.