Trust is always increasing or decreasing even in the midst of just a casual conversation. You know when you go to a group gathering and conversations are uninteresting or almost even non-existent, it’s uncomfortable and even boring. Talking about the weather or what you had to for dinner last night only goes so far in building connection.
4 Tips to Build Trust in Conversation
Number one, be aware of who you’re talking to. In a group setting, be inclusive. If someone has not had the opportunity to share in a group, invite them in but also be aware that not everyone wants to share in a group. Whether in a group or one on one, watch for signs of discomfort. If someone does not want to engage in conversation, be courteous to who they are.
Number two, ask questions. Not how are you today or what are you doing this weekend. Instead try asking what’s something that you’re looking forward to or what have you been thinking about lately. Open-ended questions give the space for authentic responses that help connection grow.
Number three, listen to the answers. You can be awesome at asking really great questions but if you don’t listen to the answers, connection will fail and trust will decrease. Seems simple I know, but listening takes intention. Focus on the person in front of you, put the phone aside and authentically engage. Ask questions that draw out even more authentic responses.
Number four, contribute. The age old phrase be quick to listen and slow to speak still holds true and yet we should be equipped to contribute to conversation. Adding value or interesting conversation builds connection. Contributing to conversation mostly comes down to input. If you don’t have good input, you won’t have much to contribute to a conversation. Listening to podcasts, reading books, watching documentaries, mentoring others or being mentored, whatever it is, if we prioritize quality input then we can help create real connection and build trust in conversation.