How can we bring more trust into the lives of our young people? Here are a few suggestions:

  1. Never make promises that you are not able or do not intend to keep
  2. Admit your own failings and mistakes – it is hard to trust someone who always thinks they are right!
  3. Watch your words – do not build up expectations and leave people feeling let down
  4. Do not bad mouth people in their absence – your listeners will suspect you are doing the same to them
  5. Keep confidences
  6. Do not be proud of cheating someone and thereby gaining an advantage
  7. Buy FairTrade and other ethically sourced goods where you can – talk about why you are doing this
  8. Do not micro-manage – show that you trust others to do their best
  9. Talk about what trust means – it can mean different things to different people.

 This lovely little book combines a fictional story on one side and a range of quotes, anecdotes, research evidence and cartoons on the other. It is all about ethical business practices, both within an organisation and building a company with contacts and networks. The story shows that when someone is ambitious and an opportunity arises that meets their personal goals for success, ethical behaviour may be hard to maintain. But in the end trust and ethical practices not only lead to more sustainable wellbeing and a positive sense of self for the individual but also make a difference to the way companies are perceived and often how successful they are over the longer term. Just a few quotes from the book:

 “Under conditions of high trust, problem-solving tends to be creative and productive.  Under conditions of low trust problem solving tends to be degenerative and ineffective” R. Wayne Boss Harvard Review

When people fail to trust colleagues in the workplace they have a tendency to:

  • Attend unnecessary meetings in case people talk behind their back
  • Request to be copied in on unnecessary emails
  • Fail to delegate
  • Experience anxiety that they may be passed over for promotion
  • Conclude that when things don’t go their way that a plot exists against them
  • Not ask for help in case they will be seen as weak.

 “Man’s goodness is a flame that can be hidden but never extinguished”  Nelson Mandela

Review by Sue Roffey, co-founder of Wellbeing Australia

Trust Unwrapped: A Story of Ethics, Integrity and Chocolate.

  by Dan Collins and David Thompson