Irrespective of whether it is present or not, trust is a force that is experienced in any interaction between people. It is the foundation of all relationships. It takes time to earn and can be destroyed in an instance!
What is Trust?
Trust is a comforting feeling or belief that someone can be relied upon to do what is expected of them. It's a leap of faith that someone takes when they place their trust in you!
When it comes to earning trust, it's important to recognise that everyone places different priorities on different characteristics, and these priorities will change depending on the situation.
- Credibility: You know your stuff and can back it up. You have an abundance of knowledge, skills and experience.
- Reliability: You do what you say and can back it up. You have a track record for living up to expectations.
- Authenticity: You are every bit who you appear to be. You are genuine and real. There is nothing fake about you.
- Vulnerability: You openly express your fears and limitations. You see this candid openness as a strength and don't fear what others may think.
- Empathy: You try to understand how others feel. You try to put yourself in the shoes of others and look at things through their eyes.
Thinking that that the vast majority would say credibility and reliability, we asked 100 engineers what priorities they placed on the above characteristics. To our surprise, 30-50% stated that authenticity, vulnerability and empathy were a priority to them.
What Characteristics Do People Deem Trustworthy?
Please think about what priorities are important to you based on the following questions.
- What characteristics are most important to you when it comes to choosing a manager to work for?
- What characteristics are most important to you when it comes to choosing a partner to spend your life with?
- What characteristics are most important to you when it comes to choosing a nurse to look after a sick family member?
- What characteristics are most important to you when it comes to choosing a car mechanic?
- What characteristics are most important to you when it comes to choosing someone to look after your child after school?
If you're like most people you will quickly see how your priorities change depending on the situation.
If you want to be perceived as someone that people can trust, you can't rely on one or two characteristics to get you by. You need to demonstrate CRAVE.