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What You Need To Do To Build Trust and Rebuild It
Sean: Hey, guys! Welcome back to the show. It’s me again, your host, Sean Si, aka Mr. CEO at 22.
And we are back with an episode that is relevant to so many people. And as a leader, this is also very, very important because we do make mistakes in our leadership.
And the question today is how do you earn back trust once you’ve lost it in your team, in your relationship? Is there a way to earn it back?
Now, if you’re new to the channel, don’t let another 10 seconds pass by without hitting that subscribe button. It’s so important to us to be able to serve you every time we have a new episode coming up.
When we talk about trust in any relationship, whether it’s a romantic relationship, it’s a professional relationship, it’s a family relationship, you have to realize that it is first given. It is first, freely given.
Yes, there may be some guards up from the other person not trusting you completely, but they’re trusting you partially. That’s why they’re open to having a conversation with you. That’s why they’re open maybe to sharing a drink with you. That’s why they’re open to working beside you or working in the same office with you. Trust is initially given.
Ernest Hemingway says, “The best way to know if you could trust someone is to trust them.” Sounds simple, but in hindsight, this is also very painful. Because if you trust the wrong person, then you are at the receiving end of a very painful experience.
So trusting someone, giving them your trust, and then them maybe earning it a little bit and then them breaking that trust, it is very painful. And for a lot of us, we have experienced this one way or another. Whether it’s in a professional environment or in a relationship environment, we all have experienced this.
There’s four main ways that trust is earned. Once it is given to you, you earn it in four major ways. Number one is reliability.
Are you a reliable person? Can people count on you? When you say something, do you do it? When you make a promise, do you keep it?
Number two is commitment.
When you are someone who is committed to something, when you say that “I’m committed to you”, “I’m committed to this job”, do you really mean it? Do you give it 100%? Or do you only give it 50%? Or do you only give it what’s comfortable for you to give it?
Because when you say you’re committed, commitment means your all. You give it all that you got, 100% that you have. When you say you’re committed, but you only give 50% or you only give 30%, that’s as good as lying and that breaks down trust.
The next major way to earn trust is loyalty.
When someone is loyal to someone, you will be able to see that when tough times come. When tough times come, it shakes the relationship. Again, whether it’s a romantic or it’s a professional relationship, it gets shaken.
You have conflicts between you two or you have conflicts with other people outside of your personal relationships, does your relationship with that other person get affected in such a way that it is negative and trust erodes?
When loyalty is a core principle of yours, when you uphold it, anything that will rattle your relationship with that other person will not affect your loyalty to that person.
You will always make sure that you have that other person’s back when they need you the most. You will not run from the battlefield. You will not desert them when they need you the most. You will uphold your Honor to them. That’s what loyalty is about.
And lastly, faithfulness.
How faithful are you in protecting your relationship with that person or in protecting your relationship with your leader, with your manager, with your boss? Are you faithful in keeping that relationship? Or do you gossip about them? Do you say something negative about them? Or do you allow yourself to be courted by other people outside of your organization?
Faithfulness is making sure that you have integrity, that you have the honor to keep that relationship whole, that you are there when they need you. You believe that they will do right by you and you will do right by them as well. That is what faithfulness is.
These are the four major pillars on how to earn trust in a relationship. This is how you earn the trust of your peers. Or if you’re a leader or a manager, this is how you earn the trust of your leader and manager and people who also follow your leadership in the office.
This is also how you earn the trust of your girlfriend, of your boyfriend, of your wife, your husband, your spouse. This is how it’s earned. You practice these four things. You will have a very strong, trusting relationship.
What happens once trust is broken? It’s like shattering a piece of pottery. It is no longer useful. It is scattered to pieces. It cannot hold any water anymore. Nothing that you say will be weighty enough to the other party anymore if you break that trust. Nothing you say will hold weight. They will not believe you.
How will they begin to believe you again? The answer is simple. Pick up the pieces one by one. Figure out how they fit together and make sure that you try to make it whole again.
You might need to glue them together. You might need to add some more clay into that pot. You might need to waterproof it. Do whatever it takes to make that piece of pottery whole again over time. And you do that by practicing the four major pillars, plus practicing three other things.
What are these three things? Number one is humility. Own up to what you’ve done to break that relationship, to break that trust. Say sorry, apologize, and make sure you tell them you’ll never do it again.
Now, they may not believe you when you say that, but mean it. What’s important is you mean it and you keep it this time. That is the foundation of your broken pottery. That’s the base.
You have already been able to establish the base, but it still doesn’t hold any water. It still doesn’t hold any weight. So what you need now is to build the rest of it.
The second thing that you need to do is be subject to that other person’s accountability checks. They no longer trust you. You apologizing does build the base, but that still lacks a lot of stuff in order for it to hold water.
For example, if you break the trust of a personal relationship and they say you got to be at home at this time or you got to allow me to check on your phone once in a while, you’ve got to be subject to that other person’s accountability checks because you’re the one who did something to break that trust.
Or if your leader or manager at work says, “I’m going to shorten the rope on you and I’m going to check on you more often. I want to know what you’re doing at a certain point in time, a certain date and time, because you’ve broken that trust and I’m paying you.” It might feel like they’re micromanaging you, but really they’re doing that because they couldn’t trust you anymore, because you’ve broken that trust.
And lastly, number three, keep on working on restoring that relationship by practicing the four major principles I have shared with you earlier.
You already got the base. You’re already building the rest of that pottery up to how it was before so that it can hold water, but it’s very fragile because you just glued the pieces together.
It’s not a solid yet, so you have to practice the four major things I mentioned. Be faithful, be loyal, be committed, and be reliable. If you’re able to practice these four major things consistently over time, you will be able to gain that trust back.
Now, with a picture of that broken pottery, it will always be fragile. It will never be the same. But there is still hope when you break someone’s trust, because often you will hear people say, “If you break my trust, then I will never give it to you again.”
That is not really true. You can still rebuild that trust, but it takes a whole lot of work and it is a very painful and humbling process and will require a lot of sacrifice.
So I want to hear from you. If there is something that you have learned from this episode, please leave it in the comment section below. And if this has added value to you, you want to share it with others, please do help us by sharing it with other people.
Remember, we’re doing this in leadership staff because we have a vision that our country’s leadership will improve. And if you have that same vision or if you believe that same vision, you, sharing this episode will help a lot.
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Thank you so much for tuning in. Again, this is your host, Sean Si, aka Mr. CEO at 22, and I will see you in the next episode.