Working with Judith E. Glaser for nearly 2 years on Conversational Intelligence was such a privilege – she trained hundreds of coaches all over the world in her lifelong work. Judith lost her fight with Cancer late last year. In her book, Conversational Intelligence Judith speaks about how we build relationships through conversation and how we build trust through those conversations.
Conversations are multidimensional, not linear – What we think, what we say, what we mean, what we hear and how we feel about it afterwards are the key to understanding and becoming aware how every conversation has impact. Positive or negative words carry emotional charge, they are triggers to past memories and experience. The more awareness we can bring to our language – the words we use in those first few seconds of a conversation can cause a connection to die or lead to a lifetime of mutual support and prosperity.
When I use her work in my Self-Awareness Workshops, I like to use the acronym of TRUST that Judith created, and I would like to share it with you here.
Cultivating great relationships is one of the surest ways to find more happiness and joy in your life. Recent studies show that those with a wide circle of friends and family live long, laugh more and worry less.
How do we Build Trust?
T – Transparency – Intention: How can I create a safe environment, be more transparent about desired outcomes, and share threats that may stand in the way?
Impact: What actions, thoughts or words will enable the other person to shift from protect to partner?
R – Relationship – Intention: How can I establish rapport; prime the conversation for mutual trust, openness, and respect; and establish a ‘power-with others’ context?
Impact: What actions, thoughts or words will enable us to listen, to connect and relax judgment of each other?
U – Understanding – Intention: How can I step into the other person’s shoes and see the world from their eyes: share what is on my mind, stay open and non-judgmental.
Impact: What actions, thoughts or words will bridge between our realities?
S – Shared Success – Intention: How can I/we paint a picture of shared success – not just my success? How can I lower my ‘attachment to being right’, and elevate my curiosity about what is possible?
Impact: What can we say to reduce conflict and open a new view of mutual success?
T – Testing Assumption – Intention: How can I/we tell the truth with candour and caring? How can we identify Reality Gaps, and stay open to test assumptions?
Impact: What actions, thoughts or words will enable us to both ‘tell our truth’; What can I do to facilitate co creative conversation?
To get to the next level of greatness depends on the quality of the culture, which depends on the quality of the relationship, which depends on the quality of the conversation – everything happens in the conversation.