Has trust really died? Or does it just seem that way?
My grandmother always told me “never trust anyone who won’t look you straight in the eye”. My grandfather always told me “never trust anyone who looks you straight in the eye because they’ll have their hand in your pocket”. So what’s a little kid to think about trust? My dad said “it boils down to live and learn”. I’m sure all of these were meant to be helpful.
We have all been burned by trust at some point, some of us more than others. At an early age we would tell our best friend something in total confidence, only to have that trust broken in the furure. We couldn’t understand why and in the process probably lost a friend. As we got older we found that it happens more often and usually with more important issues.
So we accumulate these little scars of trust. These scars can’t be seen on our skin but they are ever present on our hearts and psyche. After a while many of us lose our faith in trusting another human being. It has become apparent that self interest and personal agenda has become much more important than trust for many people.
It used to be that a simple handshake was all it took to seal a deal. Now it takes reams of paper and a team of lawyers to protect your interest. Oddly enough I still do handshake deals, and for the most part they hold up. I may have a few extra scars from those that didn’t, but overall I believe we can safely trust more than we do.
I know, I know, right now someone is uttering “romantic fool”. Just so you know I do not trust everyone I meet. We have an extra sense built into ourselves that gives off warning vibes. My wife is especially adept at sensing who not to trust, and she has a great track record with her 6thsense in this regard. Hers is better than mine. At one point in my life when I would interview someone for a high ranking position I would take the couple out to dinner with my wife and me. Her later assessment of their character weighed heavily on my decision to hire. It’s not all about talent, skill and resume.
You know, when someone tells me they don’t trust anyone, they are really telling me they don’t trust themselves. Now isn’t that sad?
In business it is difficult to know whom to trust, but you have to start somewhere. The best place to start is with those who report to you. This is your chance to perhaps build them into something more than they are or were. The best way to build them into something more is to hand out responsibility and accountability to them and at the same time support their decisions. If you do this your actions will let them know that you trust them. What better way to develop trustworthy people.
Naturally we must always be watchful of people’s movements. It’s not what people say that counts it’s what they do, so watch their movements carefully. By the way, you are constantly being watched by your children. They are watching to see if your actions follow what you tell them to do. This is how they really learn from you. Watching people is not only fun, it is enlightening.
With internet marketing it becomes much more difficult to trust. There are so many fly by night marketers and scammers out for your money that you need to develop a special 6thsense just for that. If you don’t have a 6thsense for internet marketing yet, then begin by developing a healthy sense of caution. It will save your back side and your money time and time again. I received an e-mail the other day that offered something great for $1. Sometimes these are real and sometimes they are not. This one turned out to be a partial reality. You did only have to pay $1 to get the information, but the string was it would also cost you $37 a month after that. I didn’t take part in this offer because I didn’t like the approach. It didn’t seem to me that it was worth taking a chance on trusting this marketer.
On the other hand, I’ve been following one marketer’s blog and receiving lots of good advice all for free for a while now. Then I got an e-mail offering me one of his sales themes for free. I followed the link and downloaded the theme and a video on how to use it. It turned out to be a great tool. A week later I received an e-mail from him again only this time offering me the chance to purchase a course he had written on how he makes money on small product sales websites. The cost was $97. I bought it right away for one reason. This marketer had provided me with great free advice for a while, and provided me with free tools as well. I reasoned that his course would be of value to my marketing plan. He had created in me a level of trust that told me it was OK to buy. I was right! I bought because this marketer had learned the value of giving before receiving.
So I recommend to you caution and an approach to internet marketing that will hopefully reduce the number of scars you collect and increase the number of good people you encounter on the internet. May it also guide your own marketing efforts and allow you to gain Trust from those who decide to follow you.
My own philosophy towards trust with people I meet personally is quite simple. Unless my 6thsense is awakened, I trust everyone until they give me a reason not to trust them. I find this is much easier with much less stress and effort than the alternative. However, if they violate my trust they have a huge uphill battle to regain any trust. Point of truth is that none that have violated my trust have regained the level of trust I originally gave freely.
I believe Trust is alive and well; it just needs to be a part of our life and character every day.
Finally, never forget that “TRUST IS LIMITED TO THE EXTENT OF TRUTH”.
Yours in interweb business, friendship and service,
Tom (TR) Ryan