Are you trustworthy?
Do you hold others to the same standard of trust that you hold for yourself?
If you assume that everyone defines trust the same way, you are rolling the dice and your odds are pretty low.
Trust is experienced uniquely by different personality types. This has implications for how we interact with others, communicate, set up meetings, make decisions, manage our professional reputation, and how we set up our learning and work environments.
One of the most dangerous things we can do is to project our definition of trust onto others by applying the Golden Rule – “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” Your noble intention means little if it’s conveyed in a way that others can’t “hear” or resonate with it.
Trust is about intentions, behavior, delivery AND impact. What matters isn’t what we think we meant or said, but how others experience it.
The Process Communication Model (PCM®), an internationally acclaimed framework for communicating with different personalities, identifies six distinct personality types, each with unique perceptual filters and psychological needs that determine what trust means for them. Here are tips for earning trust with each personality type in your world:
Thinkers are logical, organized, and responsible. They experience the world through thoughts, and prize data and information.
How to earn trust with Thinkers:
- Provide them with plenty of data, time frames, and an outline of what you plan to do.
- Follow through on what you say you will do, and keep them apprised of pertinent information.
- Execute important steps in a timely manner.
Persisters are dedicated, conscientious, and observant. They experience the world through beliefs, and prize loyalty and commitment.
How to earn trust with Persisters:
- Ask for their opinions, hearing their vision and share yours.
- Demonstrate your loyalty to the bigger picture.
- Follow through on your promises and commitments.
Harmonizers are compassionate, sensitive, and warm. They experience the world through their emotions, and prize family and friendship.
How to earn trust with Harmonizers:
- Listen to their feelings, showing you care about them as a person.
- Avoid judgment.
- Show them you like them for who they are and will support them emotionally, even when the chips are down.
Rebels are spontaneous, creative, and playful. They experience the world through their reactions (likes and dislikes), and prize spontaneity and creativity.
How to earn trust with Rebels:
- Be open to new ideas, encourage trial and error.
- Avoid micromanaging or preaching at them about what they should or shouldn’t do.
- Accept them the way they are and give them an open space to experiment and create.
Imaginers are reflective, imaginative, and calm. They experience the world through their reflections and imagination, and prize privacy and their own space.
How to earn trust with Imaginers:
- Use explicit commands to elicit their imagination, e.g. “Tell me what’s on your mind.”
- Tell them exactly what you want them to do, then leave them alone to do it.
- Give them the space and time to imagine new possibilities.
- Don’t expect them to socialize with the Harmonizers or brainstorm with the Thinkers and Rebels.
Promoters are charming, adaptable and persuasive. They experience the world through action, and prize self-sufficiency and adaptability.
How to earn trust with Promoters:
- Cut to the chase and focus on immediate action.
- Give them exciting, time-sensitive, mission-critical tasks.
- Keep things moving and avoid getting bogged down in details.
Trust begins with communication. If earning trust and being trustworthy are important to you, change the way you communicate.
If you want to earn trust, move beyond yourself and your own definitions. If your goal is to be trustworthy for the important people in your life, adapt your behavior and delivery so they can fully experience your good intentions.