Communities function at a much higher level when there is a great degree of trust.
The goal for humanity David DeSteno says is to foster more trust. Scientific research shows that one of the prime motivators of trust is similarity; how much you feel you are like another person. This feeling of similarity can be triggered with something as simple as taping your fingers together in time to a song.
We want our association communities to function well. Cooperation builds associations. It makes sense then that we would want to promote greater trust between:
- board members
- staff teams
- committee members
- board and staff
- staff and members
- members and vendors/affiliate members/corporate members/sponsors/exhibitors
Maybe we need to think more about incorporating trust-building exercises into the start of our conferences and kick-off meetings? Before you panic and say “I’m not climbing up a 10 foot tower blindfolded to plummet into the arms of my (hopefully) waiting teammates!” Consider what it would take for everyone to find similarities. What would it take for you to help members, exhibitors and staff figure out what they have in common? Could you:
- Offer more subject area interest groups
- Professional experience groups
- Foster conversations about similar goals, challenges and projects
- Help folks learn about similarities outside of work like hobbies and travel
What can you do to build more trust in your association and have a better functioning community?
See David DeSteno’s full talk here: