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Creating the Conditions for Trust

Two weeks ago we talked about Trust as something that is co-created by the teams throughout the Alliances Development Process and the importance of Authentic Engagement.

The building of Trust is the responsibility of everyone in the partnership. During the Alliances Development Process, Authentic Engagement is slowly encouraged by the support of the Alliances Facilitator who helps by establishing the Alliances Field of Relationship, where productive social contracts are established. The field is simply the practices used by the Facilitator that create the conditions for Authentic Relationship and Trust to emerge along the Journey.

These include:

  1. Beginning each meeting with a Check-In and a Check-Out.
  2. Setting the Intentions, Principles and Priorities of each working session.
  3. Working with Time, Rhythm & Pace, depending on what is actually happening in each moment.
  4. Working with Tone & Emotionality to shift structure and enliven real conversation.
  5. And creating the right atmosphere by choosing the right Place and Space, having the right Nourishment, Materials & Media and Room-Setup.

All these activities need to be aligned to what is actually happening in the group’s relationship and where the team is along the Partnership Journey.

Over time, the alliance group will begin to model the Authentic Engagement that builds ongoing Trust. This includes:

  1. Engaging others with your full-self, being-real (not hiding behind your role, position or company)
  2. Showing Vulnerability (stating when you do not know something, and asking for input and expressing things openly when you do)
  3. Speaking for your own self, sharing assumptions, revealing desires and expressing what you can and can’t do.
  4. Demonstrating Responsibility for your biases and your own reactions.
  5. Showing Commitment to accommodate and work through challenges.
  6. Remaining Curious in finding solutions together and creating collaboratively.

These practices, establishing the Alliance Field of Relationship and the practice of Authentic Engagement relate to the entire life of an alliance, not only during its development. Yet, experience suggests that bad beginnings can make for bad endings, as such, ensuring Trust is established in the beginning phases, is part and parcel of future success.


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