I’ve been developing ideas around the notion of trust for the last few weeks, prototyping some early survey questions and building my own understanding of the types of trust that exist within the organisation. During this time I settled on the phrase ‘The Landscape of Trust’ to describe the disparate and often subjective ideas that come together to form our sense of trust within an organisation. Today, for the first time, I started trying to sketch this out: this is imperfect, very early stage, and shared in the spirit of #WorkingOutLoud, so I’m claiming a permission to get it wrong as I learn how to get it right.
The first thing that I’m trying to work through it how to represent the landscape: one option is for the guiding principal to have some areas representing low trust so to other areas representing high trust, whilst another option is to simply map the different factors which form part of trust and try to chart the relationships between them. I’m currently favouring this second model and will use a separate layer to map the impact of high or low trust upon it.
My current expectation is that I will prototype around 25 different questions to explore the elements that will make up this landscape. From this, i’ll hope to develop a test version of the survey and run this with a thousand people. Finally, from there, I think I’ll try to run it in 10 organisations to calibrate results and see what differences emerge.
With all that in mind, you’ll see that this first map looks nothing like a map! I’m simply trying to surface the names the areas and starting to get straight in my own mind how they correlate with each other. For example, I’ve already discussed, even from this early work, how there may be some differentiation between trust and value: early results indicate that to be trusted we must give freedom, whilst for people to feel valued, they must be rewarded.
To represent how strength of trust impacts on these factors, I’m sticking with the notion of Types of Trust: as discussed previously I think we can talk about functional trust, which is a transactional type, and invested trust, which is the added value piece that has to be earned. On top of this I’m thinking about adding two other layers, one to represent the absence of trust and one to talk about blind trust.
I started thinking in the last few days about blind trust: that which is invested without reciprocation or reaction to grounded evidence or reality. I’ll try to develop this notion out next.
So here you go: the earliest sketch of The Landscape of Trust, which looks nothing like a landscape, but does at least start to explore the most challenging realm of trust. I’ll continue to #WorkOutLoud as i build out the prototype questions and develop the landscape further.
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