Establishing and building trust are critical factors in building relationships. Trust grows in bits and pieces. Make every interaction count and focus on specific actions you can take to establish and build trust.
Eliminate distractions. Communicate that the person you’re talking to is important. Silence your phone, including email and text notifications and put it phone down, ideally out of sight. If you’re on the phone, make sure you’re somewhere where you can talk freely without interruptions or distractions. If you’re meeting in person, choose a location that won’t be too loud or distracting.
Set time expectations. Tell the person you have X minutes to talk – doing so puts the person at ease because they know what to expect and helps you build reliability. But don’t set a time if you can’t or won’t stick to it.
Ask, then listen. Show genuine interest by asking questions to understand the person, their business and how you could help them.
Understand. Seek to fully understand them. Paraphrase what you heard to show you’re listening and to maintain clear communication.
Watch your and their body language. And watch for non-verbals and body language to learn about the person’s anxiety, confidence, and degree of emotion around the topic.
Share credit generously. When in doubt, share. Don’t take credit for yourself, or allow others to give you credit for an accomplishment that was not all yours.
Never talk negatively about others. Use direct communication and don’t talk with others about problems you are having with someone else.
State your intentions. Be explicit and direct about your intentions. Avoid being unclear or not exactly explicit about what you need or expect.
Be humble. Be timely, be humble and be willing to be wrong. Never withhold potentially useful information, opinions or action to heighten drama, minimise your risk or being wrong or maximise credit for being right.