I learned from HR consultant Robert Fisher
that there are four basic trust models:
- Suspicious still. Don't ever trust anyone, even after they
have done something nice.
- Suspicious until. Don't trust anyone until they prove themself.
- Trust until. Trust people until they screw up.
- Trust still. Trust people even after they make mistakes, sometimes
even when they hurt you.
Here is a picture I drew showing trust models can evolve:
Here are some beliefs I have about trust models:
- Evolution. Although you might be today in any one of the
four stages, you can also move through various stages in life. I like
to think that if people start out life in a suspicious stage, that
they can evolve to becoming more trusting of others. (Remove those
scars on your back...)
- Trust still. Many people would argue that stage 4 is a bad
place to be, trusting people even after they have hurt you or made
mistakes. I think it is all a matter of degrees, but in general,
prefer to be closer to stage 4 than stage 3. I also don't like working
with people who are in stage 1, and often (but not always) don't like
working with people who are in stage 2.
- Optimism. Optimism/belief is a critical component for being
very successful. (E.g., sculptor who sees the statue and simply frees
it from the stone;
marshmallow test, etc.) I think there is a strong correlation between
trust models and optimism.
- Success. People at the top of the trust diagram are
generally more successful in life than those on the bottom. Part of
this is that you often need to trust colleagues to have them perform
at their highest levels.