Smart Trust

Smart Trust: Creating Prosperity, Energy, and Joy in a Low-Trust World” is the title of a newly published book by Stephen M. R. Covey and Greg Link.

This Wednesday, Covey joined MnDOT’s monthly Commissioner’s Reading Corner book discussion and talked with employees about trust building strategies via a video conference.

Building and increasing trust with the citizens of Minnesota is something MnDOT has been working on since the I-35W bridge collapse in 2007 and the current Commissioner Tom Sorel took the leadership position several months later in 2008.

In the book as well as in the discussion, Covey talks about five actions that produce Smart Trust:

  1. Choose to Believe in Trust
  2. Start With Self
  3. Declare Your Intent … and Assume Positive Intent in Others
  4. Do What You Say You’re Going to Do
  5. Lead Out in Extending Trust to Others

Covey is also the author of the popular book “The SPEED of Trust: The One Thing That Changes Everything.”

In that book, Covey introduces the trust phenomenon across 5 waves. Understanding these 5 waves will enable you to behave in ways that establish trust and allow you to become a leader who gets results by inspiring trust in others.

  1. First Wave: Self Trust. The key principle underlying this wave is credibility.
  2. Second Wave: Relationship Trust. The key principle underlying this wave is consistent behavior.
  3. Third Wave: Organizational Trust. The key principle underlying this wave, alignment, helps leaders create organizational trust.
  4. Fourth Wave: Market Trust. The underlying principle behind this wave is reputation.
  5. Fifth Wave: Societal Trust. The principle underlying this wave is contribution.

Covey also identifies 13 behaviors that builds trust:

  1. Talk Straight
  2. Demonstrate Respect
  3. Create Transparency
  4. Right Wrongs
  5. Show Loyalty
  6. Deliver Results
  7. Get Better
  8. Confront Reality
  9. Clarify Expectations
  10. Practice Accountability
  11. Keep Commitments
  12. Listen First
  13. Extend Trust

Stephen M. R. Covey  is the son of Stephen R. Covey of 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.