Is Trust Broken?
I was looking at a contract with my publishing house last week. It got me thinking about trust. This contract was lengthy and detailed. Fair, but very detailed. Yet there were still a few things I had to take on trust. I did it. But how many others would?
My how times have changed.
When I started consulting, I took client work on a handshake. That's all I needed. You see, I don't want to work with anyone who I can't trust. Today, everyone wants a contract. Mostly to protect themselves in case of litigation.
What a way to start a relationship.
If we live in mistrust today - where will we be tomorrow?
Lost trust impacts all of us. Here's an example. My horse trainer's insurance company refused to allow dogs on her property because they were afraid of lawsuits. Mind you, 70 or so horses live on this property 24 x 7. Up to 6 of them run free during the day at one time - along the road and in front of people's homes. It's horsey heaven! And FYI, my trainer has allowed dogs for twenty years now - without one single problem.
Anyway - the insurance thing sounds like no big deal. Right?
Not to my pup Diego. The ranch is his favorite place to go. I pick up my boots and he begins his doggie dance. Barking and running in circles - joy oozing out of every hair. Now that favorite place is gone. How do I explain to his pure trusting doggie self that because of human mistrust - he loses?
Without trust, we will lose more than our freedom.
The weight of mistrust is heavy on our businesses and our economy. Legal costs are skyrocketing, progress is slowing. Soon we won't be able to do anything without a legal release. Imagine - signing a release to eat at a restaurant, enter a mall, pump our own gas.
A friend called me last night to vent about a legal hassle with marketing materials. Hey company is taking every single marketing piece - from outbound emails to landing pages to spec sheets, through a legal process. The results are a disaster for the business. Every compelling, though factual, word and statement is gone. There's nothing left but pablum now that the legal beagles are done. It's a waste of money and time to use the poor content that's being 'allowed' by the legal teams. It's ridiculous - and such a sad statement of our culture today.
We cannot move forward without trust.