“Those who trust us educate us.”
I have found over the years that one of the cornerstones of the truly successful are those people who keep their promises and go out of their way to not let others down. It seems these days that I run into a number of folks who do not put much value on keeping their word. They are the people who don’t feel it is important to be on time, sometimes never even showing up for appointments.
I have seen far too many people who have volunteered to cover a shift for a community organization only to fail to show up, and when asked why they respond with an answer that shows they really did not think it was important. Think about the people you know, the tradespeople you deal with, if you are like me you find that most are trustworthy but that some are not. The people you can rely on are the folks you deal with and those that are soon are left behind.
A few years ago the wise Jon Garden wrote an article about building your trustworthiness, here in part is what he wrote.
11 WAYS TO BUILD TRUST
In my book Soup I discussed how trust is one of the essential ingredients to build a great relationship, winning team and culture of greatness. Without trust you can’t have engaged relationships and without engaged relationships you won’t be a successful leader, manager, sales person, team member, principal, teacher, nurse, coach, etc.
In this spirit I wanted to share some thoughts about how we can build the trust that is essential for great relationships. Many of the suggestions you are already know. Many ideas I share are common sense.
- Say what you are going to do and then do what you say!
- Communicate, communicate, communicate. Frequent, honest communication builds trust. Poor communication is one of the key reasons marriages and work relationships fall apart.
- Trust is built one day, one interaction at a time, and yet it can be lost in a moment because of one poor decision. Make the right decision.
- Value long term relationships more than short term success.
- Sell without selling out. Focus more on your core principles and customer loyalty than short term commissions and profits.
- Trust generates commitment; commitment fosters teamwork; and teamwork delivers results. When people trust their team members they not only work harder, but they work harder for the good of the team.
- Be honest! My mother always told me to tell the truth. She would say, “If you lie to me then we can’t be a strong family. So don’t ever lie to me even if the news isn’t good.”
- Become a coach. Coach your customers. Coach your team at work. Guide people, help them be better and you will earn their trust.
- Show people you care about them. When people know you care about their interests as much as your own they will trust you. If they know you are out for yourself, their internal alarm sounds and they will say to themselves “watch out for that person.”
- Always do the right thing. We trust those who live, walk and work with integrity.
- When you don’t do the right thing, admit it. Be transparent, authentic and willing to share your mistakes and faults. When you are vulnerable and have nothing to hide you radiate trust.
“Leadership requires five ingredients–brains, energy, determination, trust, and ethics. The key challenges today are in terms of the last two–trust and ethics.”
Sam and Morris were both fanatics about deep sea fishing. Each would come back from fishing trips, and tell the other big lies about the number, and sizes of the fish they caught. So Sam comes back from his latest fishing trip, and tells Morris, “You wouldn’t believe, but in da Bahamas I caught a 500 pound herring. ”
Morris says….A 500 pound herring? Well that’s nothing, last time I fished in da Bahamas, I pulled up an old lantern from a sunken Spanish ship . . . and da candle was still burning! ” They both looked at each other, knowing that the other was lying.
Finally, Morris said to Sam….” Look Sam, if you take 450 pounds from off your herring I’ll blow out my candle! ”
She said: All husbands are alike. They have different faces so they can be told apart.
A friend of mine is a deputy with the sheriff’s department canine (K9) unit. One evening, the deputy was dispatched to the scene of a possible burglary, where he discovered the back door of a building ajar. He let the dog out his patrol car and commanded it to enter and seek.
Jumping from the back seat, the dog headed for the building. After lunging through the doorway, the dog froze and backed out. My friend was puzzled until he investigated further.
Then he noticed the sign on the building: “Veterinarian’s Office.”
If your wife parks the car, don’t sit there and insist she do it properly. Walking the rest of the way to the curb is good exercise.
At the Henry Street Hebrew School, Goldblatt, the new teacher, finished the day’s lesson. It was now time for the usual question period.
“Mr. Goldblatt,” announced little Joey, “there’s somethin’ I can’t figger out.”
“What’s that Joey?” asked Goldblatt.
“Well accordin’ to the Bible, the Children of Israel crossed the Red Sea, right?”
“An’ the Children of Israel beat up the Philistines, right?”
“An’ the Children of Israel built the Temple, right?”
“Again you’re right.”
“An’ the Children of Israel fought the ‘gyptians, an’ the Children of Israel fought the Romans, an’ the Children of Israel wuz always doin’ somethin’ important, right?”
“All that is right, too,” agreed Goldblatt. “So what’s your question?”
“What I wanna know is this,” demanded Joey. “What wuz all the grown-ups doin”?
Hypochondriac’s headstone epitaph: “See?”
An old farmer in Indiana had owned a small farm for several years. He had a large pond in the back, fixed up nice; picnic tables, horseshoe courts, basketball court, etc. The pond was properly shaped and fixed up for swimming when it was built. One evening the old farmer decided to go down to the pond, as he hadn’t been there for a while, and look it over. As he neared the pond, he heard voices shouting and laughing with glee. As he came closer he saw it was a bunch of young women skinny dipping in his pond.
He made the women aware of his presence and they all went to the deep end of the pond. One of the women shouted to him, “We’re not coming out until you leave!” The old man replied, “I didn’t come down here to watch you ladies swim or make you get out of the pond naked.”
“I’m here to feed the alligator.”
Trust is the glue of life. It’s the most essential ingredient in effective communication. It’s the foundational principle that holds all relationships.
Stay well, do good work, and have fun.
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