DiscoverTrustTalk - It's all about Trust
TrustTalk - It's all about Trust
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TrustTalk - It's all about Trust

Author: Severin de Wit

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Trust takes years to build, seconds to break and forever to repair
34 Episodes
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Paul Zak is a professor at Claremont Graduate University in Southern California and the Founder of Immersion Neuroscience. He talks about the neuroscience of trust. His experiments researching the neurochemical oxytocin (the "Trust Molecule") show that most humans are biologically wired to cooperate, but that business and economics ignore the biological foundations of human reciprocity, risking loss. Building a culture of trust is what makes a meaningful difference. Employees in high-trust organizations are more productive, have more energy at work, collaborate better with their colleagues, and stay with their employers longer than people working at low-trust companies. They also suffer less chronic stress and are happier with their lives, and these factors fuel stronger performance.
Maikel Batelaan, consultant and co-author of the book “Why Should I Trust You” talks about the ideal of every organization: smooth collaboration. In practice, it is more unruly. After all, there are always complex problems that need to be solved. Many leaders then react impulsively: they flee or they fight. Increasingly, we see leaders who choose the solution that lies exactly in between: they create trust. Organizations are much more equitable, much flatter than they used to be. If there is a need to create change or to overcome existing rivalries, the first thing that comes to mind is to restore trust among the key players, trust between leaders and co-workers. And that's why he thinks that in most cases where organizations want to change, trust is something that should be seriously looked at. Distrust blocks basic team performance, and it also makes people very unhappy in their private life. If a situation like that exists, it's important in the first place to identify the elephant in the room. He talks about the taboo to talk about this lack of trust and the remedies to restore trust.
Admiral Bauer is NATO’s most senior military officer. In his first podcast interview he talks about the crucial role of trust in the military training and operations, about his years at the Naval Academy and the international retreat from Afghanistan, about “mission command” and his personal mantra “Expect the Unexpected”. He speaks of military personnel as highly educated and trained professionals, who do not conform to popular stereotyping, about ethical choices in combat and the difference between trust and performance.
Paul Timmers talks about trust and cybersecurity. Cyber threats undermine trust in the daily practice of working with digital systems and in geopolitical relations. But even if we should increase our control of digital technologies, some myths about digital sovereignty must be debunked. Nevertheless, there are also sensible ways forward to strengthen strategic autonomy in the digital world. Importantly, the debate about trust and technology is going really to the foundations of the kind of society that we want to have.
Afghanistan has been all over the news in the past weeks. The reason was far from positive. The Taliban unexpectedly returned to power, just at the time that the last international troops were being withdrawn from the country. The final chapter of twenty years of international engagement became the most tragic one, as countries tried to evacuate their citizens and the Afghans that had worked for them. In TrustTalk we talk to Jorrit Kamminga, an associate fellow of the Dutch Clingendael Institute who spent 16 years in Afghanistan and has recently published a Dutch book about twenty years of the Netherlands in Afghanistan. With him, we explore the various layers of trust that existed in the past twenty years. From the national parliaments of donor countries and the international military coalitions to the Afghans on the receiving end and the new interim government of the Taliban.
Trust and Teamwork

Trust and Teamwork

2021-09-2126:55

In this interview with trust researcher Bart de Jong he focuses on the impact of trust on teams in organizational settings, about the difference in hierarchy or rank among team members. Trust building in a team should not be a one-off exercise but an inherent element of every interaction, every day. He talks about three ways managers can have control over that they can use to build and maintain trust, about differences in online and face-to-face team meetings. He researched three waves of trust research, spanning a period of more than 25 years.
Deep trust and high expectations are set to be two pillars of high-performing cultures and Emotional Intelligence (EQ) is essential to both. It is said that when leaders set high expectations without the EQ necessary to create trust, they breed anxiety. They breed stress and burnout. Bert Iedema, board room coach has extensive experience with EQ and how to improve it by training, helping to create trust.
According to Marcos Aguiar, senior partner and managing director at BCG Sao Paulo, Brazil, 7 out of the 10 most valuable companies in the world, are ecosystems. When there is no trust or if the level of trust falls in an ecosystem, participants are less likely to cooperate and frictions occur, harming their performance. Competence is by far the most prevalent trust driver in the ecosystems he studied, among others companies like Sony, Amazon, Handy, HopSkipDrive, Spotify, BaseCamp, Blix, Tile, Match, Ant Group’s Trusple, Doordash, TaskRabbit and Apple. There are tools you can use to reinforce trust, or to substitute for trust, which is what the BCG Henderson Institute identified in the successful ecosystems they studied, the “7 tools for building a business people trust”.
Trust becomes an issue in copyright in the digital age because it is based on an implicit understanding of the way content is copied and distributed versus how copyright could be infringed. In the pre-digital age, it is based on a foundation of trust between businesses and the amount of trust that was implied in relationships between creators and consumers. In the digital age, every user has the ability to make virtually an infinite number of copies of creative works for almost no cost and distribute them to anyone they want in the world. And so the copyright owner no longer has this ability to obtain recourse against people who he doesn’t know and who to trust. In this interview Bill Rosenblatt discusses the various technical means to establish that trust in digitally distributed works, from digital rights management, watermarking, financial means like levies, and other means. He reminds us of the US CASE law and the problem with legislation to solve the trust issue in dispersing digital copyrighted material.
Trusted Leadership

Trusted Leadership

2021-07-1627:21

David Horsager is a global expert on trust and CEO of Trust Edge Leadership Institute where the mission is to develop trusted leaders and organizations. Trust is a fundamental, bottom-line issue. Without it, leaders lose teams, salespeople lose sales, and organizations lose reputation, retention, and revenue. But high-trust teams and organizations bring out the best in their people and get the greatest results. Through David’s industry-leading research The Trust Outlook and firsthand experience working with the world’s highest-performing organizations, David reveals the 8 Pillar Framework for driving business results and becoming the most trusted in your industry.
In this interview negotiation experts, Bob Bordone and Tim Masselink explain what it takes to build trust during negotiations. Negotiation includes any intent, any effort, any set of communications to influence or to persuade. So embedded under negotiation are things like dispute resolution or conflict resolution or mediation in my mind, because all of those tasks in some way are around trying to influence behavior. Negotiation is bigger than that. Negotiation includes both making deals and helping people resolve conflicts or helping people manage disputes in some way. What do skillful negotiators have to make them succeed? The importance to create value with the other side: the more negotiators feel that there is trust with their counterpart, the less risky it is for any of the parties to share information about their preferences, the less risky it is for them to engage in a joint venture with them. The role of online or real-life meetings for the outcome of negotiations, the importance of being honest and predictable. Have men and women different skills? Negotiation is not a debate. The "shadow of the future" hanging over negotiations. We talk about negotiations via virtual tools (ZOOM, TEAMS), can they be effective, and the role of confidentiality.
Interview with Jeroen Ouwehand. He is Global Senior Partner of the international law firm Clifford Chance. In this role, he not only represents 580 partners but also chairs the Partnership Council but he is above all the ambassador for the firm externally. The work of lawyers is all about trust, reputation, and quality. Once competing for instructions, during the pandemic there has been a flight to trusted relationships and quality and clients revert back to those relations that are strongest, which have the most trust. Trust is about being honest, about integrity, about doing the right thing when no one is watching, and about keeping promises, managing expectations, and being honest about what you can do and can't do. Within the corporate culture Clifford Chance trust-building is essential, the firm trains legal and non-legal skills, negotiation skills, presentation skills commercial awareness skills, but also many parts of curriculums are focused on trust and interpersonal skills. Internal networking is also important. Jeroen talks about his litigation practice and the mentoring program the firm built: a reverse mentoring program whereby partners are mentored by more junior lawyers or by business professionals who have a different background. He talks about second opinions, the corporate culture where trust-building is essential, Fons Trompenaars’ high and low trust cultures, and the role of intimacy between client and the lawyer.  
Our today’s guest is Ad Antonisse, Director Market Access and External Affairs of AstraZeneca in The Netherlands. He talks about AstraZeneca as a producer of personalized medicine for cancer treatments and the company’s public-private relationship with the inventor of the Covid-19 vaccine, Oxford University in the UK. Despite being in the middle of a pandemic, he doesn’t consider being in the crosshairs of the public eye as a burden. The company makes sure its vaccine product is available all over the world at affordable prices. Due to laws and strict regulations, the company has very limited space to respond to questions that arise around the vaccine and its availability. The company does its best to produce the vaccine and maintain its quality on a non-profit basis during the pandemic. He replies to the question about compulsory licensing. In his view, complex manufacturing processes and quality issues make it very hard for anyone else but trusted partners to produce the vaccine. Producing a vaccine a little more than a year after the breakout of the pandemic is a remarkable achievement of science. Growing distrust in society also affects the pharmaceutical industry. He talks about the role of his department to discuss with politicians issues about cost-benefit and how medicine is produced. (The interview took place on April 26, in the middle of the second coronavirus wave)
Interview with professor Guido Möllering, director and Chair of Management at the Reinhard Mohn Institute at the Witten-Herdecke University in Witten, Germany, and editor-in-chief of the “Journal of Trust Research”. Is trust a useful subject for research as it is so elusive and hard to define? We talk about his 2006 book “Trust, Reason, Routine, Reflexivity". Inspired by the German sociologist Georg Simmel he reflects on trust as the ability to believe in someone without being able to really say what it is you believe. He mentions trusting versus trust and how pharmaceutical companies and the HIV/AIDS community finally got to trust each other. About the “trust gap” where longtime business partners like Apple and Qualcomm and Microsoft and Intel had to readjust their relationship, once very successful but went sour because they realized too late that their relationships had become locked-in.
In this interview, Jaya Klara Brekke talks about the politics of blockchain technology and whether it solves the problem of power, how a technology that was meant to be “neutral” tends to ignore the fact that engineers and developers making real decisions on how the system should be designed, thereby quickly becoming politically contentious. She frames the term “Hippocratic Oath” making people more conscious of the actual decisions taking place in the design of blockchain. She talks about the bitcoin blockchain technology and the competitive process in bitcoin mining which creates a game that assumes a race for profit.
Interview with Judit Neurink, an independent journalist who lived and worked in the Middle East. Trust is of great importance in her field of work. When training young journalists in Iraq she warned them that if they lie to their public, people will lose their trust. But many had no choice, as they worked for party media only interested in the truth of the party. Talking to Yezidi victims who escaped from the Islamic terror group ISIS, she was appalled to see some international colleagues breaking the trust the young women showed by talking about their ordeal. It had direct consequences for other journalists too, as many women no longer felt like talking to them. This problem she currently encounters is a result of the distrust fake news has sowed towards journalists and regular media. As a result, people become less well informed, so less able to make the right decisions. She concludes that now, plain and simple, honest and trustworthy information that is not biased or opinionated is more important than ever.
Interview with Jacoba Sieders, Independent digital identity thought leader. In her view, controls and architectures to protect our important information need to be adjusted to a new reality of “zero trust”: data is distributed and in transit everywhere, across safe and unsafe devices and hyperconnected ecosystems. Identity- and access management is the guardian angel at the front door of systems and touches on all digital processes. Ideally, user convenience, privacy, and security are equally robust. Fundamental security by design is a must. Prescribing security levels through legislation is not easy, because security cannot be measured, and risk levels are volatile. Incidents teach that governments should probably be audited and tested for security as heavily as banks.
Interview with Geert Corstens. As a former President of the Netherlands Supreme Court, he made great efforts to improve and maintain trust in the judiciary by advocating more openness in publishing judgments, press summaries, and giving interviews, which was not always wholeheartedly applauded by his colleagues. The legislative branch of government and the executive, two parts of the Trias Politica, have financial means and can enforce even by using force if need be, the third part, the judiciary, has only the trust of the people. Courts have to constantly show their independence and impartiality. Judges have to be both modest and courageous when the executive does not obey the law or when the legislator enacts a law contrary to an international treaty. Sometimes judges have to step in where politicians fail to agree but society requires a decision, giving the example of euthanasia, where the Supreme Court decided in a case in the 1980s setting out circumstances where euthanasia is allowed. He denies there is anything like clear “dikastocracy” in The Netherlands.
Interview with Ian Shapiro, professor of Political Science at Yale University. In his view, the underlying problem of increased mistrust is economic: the disappearance of long-term employment security, the decline of middle-class incomes, and the downward mobility of many middle-class people. A great motivator of action is the fear of experiencing a loss, which fear is exploited for political gain. In Europe, it is the failure of left-of-center parties to protect their constituencies and the inability of the traditional social democratic mainstream parties to deliver the sort of protections that they used to provide. This is all linked to economic factors, the decline of industrial jobs, the collapse of labor unions, globalization, jobs going to technology. That is causing mistrust in political institutions which is exploited by political entrepreneurs as a way of getting to power, resulting in populism. It is a failure of the political, educational, and economic system to deliver security that is breeding mistrust. He talks about the cause of polarization in political parties and the complacency of businesses while desperate people are being mobilized by politicians who are going to do things those businesses don’t like: immigration, trade wars, protectionism. The interview covers also his newly published book “The Wolf at the Door” which he wrote with Michael Graetz, about rising inequality as a threat to democracy.
Interview with Charles H. Green, co-author of the seminal book “The Trusted Advisor” (2001) now celebrating its 20th anniversary. He talks about the trust paradoxes, the shift from trust as a personal attribute to reputation and branding. Is making a genuine connection harder using on-screen connectivity tools? He reflects on the Trust Equation which hasn’t changed over the last 20 years. Potentially the most powerful component, “intimacy” (feeling emotional security in dealing with a person) is more important than most professionals realize and who feel more confident about sharing content than showing intimacy. He reflects on the importance of listening as a profound method of trust, and the future of the Trust Equation.
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