Learning and Trust LO13293

Tim Trummer (aen1997@TheRamp.net)
Fri, 18 Apr 1997 01:02:33 -0500 (CDT)

Replying to LO13196 --

I noticed a lot of thrashing around on the concept of trust and learning.

Trust is a really seductive idea to introduce into any situation because
it is so grand and noble a concept. The thing we forget about trust is
that by its nature it is very fragile. It doesn't take a bad person to
break a trust. Even the most trustworthy person lapses. And, it doesn't
take a lot to break a trust. Since trust is mostly thought of as an
absolute, nearly any lapse destroys it completely. "I just can't TRUST him

Because trust is so fragile, I think it's not right to put so much weight
on it. I trust my neighbor to feed my dog while I am away. I do not
trust crumbled socialist dictatorships to know where all their nuclear
weapons are. There is a difference.

Whether in love or in work, people value safety and reconciliation. I
feel safe here because I know with certainty that I am cared for. If
there is a problem, I know there is a will to be reconciled because the
relationship is valued on both sides.

As to the studies that show trustworthiness to be the most valued
characteristic of a leader, I suppose this could be a methodology problem
in the study. If you give people a list of traits to choose from,
naturally they will pick the fuzziest, prettiest ones. Ask people whether
they want a leader who is trustworthy or one who is credible.
Trustworthiness sounds loftier, but while credibility is humble, it is
also more attainable and more stable, isn't it?

There are other semantic problems with the word trust. For example, does
someone "give" you her trust, or do you have to "earn" it? I know, my
English major is showing.

People do yearn for security, but I'm not sure that trust is the right
word to express that yearning.

Tim Trummer


Tim Trummer <aen1997@TheRamp.net>

Learning-org -- An Internet Dialog on Learning Organizations For info: <rkarash@karash.com> -or- <http://world.std.com/~lo/>