Trust – The Ultimate Five Letter Word

Whatever happened to TRUST in American society and business?  Long ago, a man’s word was his bond.  Businesses valued their customers and supply chain partners.  Trust was earned with a simple handshake.

A simplistic and naïve point of view, sure…  Would we all be better served if people focused on building trust in their everyday relationships and interactions?  In my view, the answer is a resounding “Hell Yes”.

I consistently see too many people shoot towards short term gains, and pass right by long term ideals.  It’s sad really.  Everyone always wonders “why” and “what happened” to American businesses.  From my perspective, they’ve lost the ability to hire and maintain a trustworthy staff.  It’s a rare occasion when someone in a business really makes you feel special and that they value your time, and more importantly your money.

It’s not all bad.  Some companies will go to great lengths to keep your trust, as when the makers of Tylenol removed their product off the shelves in the United States after the tampering scandal.  They quickly self-imposed the recall and then invented their security systems to keep their product safe before restocking the shelves.  That’s big.

Compare that to how BP has bungled the Gulf Oil spill disaster, and then posting record profits the next quarter while the entire economy of the Gulf region still suffers.  I for one will drive right by a BP on the way to another gas station, even if their marquee sign posts higher gas prices.  That’s big too.

To me, earning trust is just common sense:

  1. Do what you say you are going to do.  If you make a promise keep it.  Even if it’s hard or inconvenient.  Do it.
  2. Be honest.
  3. Give.  Give your time, your love, your support, your thoughts, your efforts, your emotions, your participation, yourself.  Don’t worry about the payback, or “what’s in it for me”.
  4. Have empathy for others.  Especially if they work for you.  You don’t manage robots…
  5. Trust isn’t about money.  Money doesn’t buy trust, nor should it.
  6. Do the right thing.
  7. Lastly, trust is earned – not given.  The more trust you desire, the harder you have to work for it.  Put your time in.

I’m lucky to have some great people in my life that I trust.  Sure, I’ve faltered and done some regrettable things; who hasn’t?  I’m always working on gaining more trust.  It’s the currency that I want in my corner when the chips are down and I need to spend it.

Trust me on this…

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