The Republican convention is now a memory and the Democratic convention is upon us.
Numerous polls have shown that trust is a big issue in this election. Depending on who sponsors the poll, Hillary or Donald has more or less trustworthiness.
Speakers on the convention stages try to convince audiences that we can trust their candidate. They know that this trust is critical to secure our vote.
Credibility and trustworthiness are also critical in our workplace. We may not be running for election to a political position, but we often ask people for their “vote” to support our ideas, fund our projects, purchase our products, and accept our feedback/coaching …
What are ways that you can build the trust needed to be successful in your role?
- Do what you say you will do. This is a simple yet essential practice. You must be ready to do what you say, own the results, and be accountable.
- Tell the truth. In our era of electronic communication, it is hard (and ill-advised) to do anything but tell the truth; ultimately the truth will come out. Consider not only what you say, but also what you are not saying.
- If you change position, explain why. Your perspective and way of doing things may change in time. That’s OK, if you explain the reason behind the change. The “why” is very important to gaining trust.
- Listen and show empathy. One of the best ways to build trust is to listen. When you listen with empathy, you will build relationships, and ultimately it is within the relationship that trust develops.
It takes time to build trust. People need to know that you are demonstrating the qualities and behaviors above. Once you build trust, remember that it is fragile. One mistake, one comment, one lack of judgment, and you can destroy the trust you’ve built.
Stay tuned and keep watching the candidates. There is a lot to be learned about what to do and what not to do – which we all can apply in our business lives.