The currency of trust is hard won. The best view I have of it in an organisational context right now is “predictability and consistency of response over time“. In other words, we can learn to trust an organisation if we know where we stand, but if their response is erratic, we can’t.
Why does it matter?
Trust in organisations is different from trust in people. They are entities. The trust we invest in them is part of our half of the social contract. In the Social Age, as we move towards newer models of learning, we need to have trust in the equation. Where we ask people to disclose something of themselves, to share and learn within communities, we need trust.
But at times of change, it’s hard to see it. The very consistency we crave is undermined by hollow promises and change in circumstance. So we need to explore how we build and invest this into relationships. How organisations can form a broad relationship with individuals that is both fair and right, that recognises the change but still provides reassurance. A relationship that recognises it’s own transience and only makes demands accordingly.