Types of Trust Between People

Swift Trust and Time Based Trust

Did you realize there were different types of trust? This is an important concept to understand when dealing with analytics. As all analytics professionals know, there is no way to convey four years’ worth of analytic education and many years of experience during a thirty-minute presentation. The people receiving the brief must trust the presenter to some extent. There is little to no opportunity for the receivers of the brief to go off and validate the methodologies used independently. Therefore there is some transference of trust from the analytics model to the analytics professional briefing the model.

Now we can address the two different types of trust. First, there is the traditional time base trust. This is the traditional type of trust that is built over a long period. Commitments are made and consistently kept. This proves that someone is committed to fulfilling their promises to another person. After a period of time and a number of these fulfilled commitments, trust is built.

Swift Trust

The second type of trust is built in a very small period of time. Extreme examples of this include emergency healthcare professionals and first responders. If you have a medical emergency and must go to the emergency department for treatment, you will probably trust the person that provides that treatment. The same goes for if you were in an automobile accident and needed to be removed from your car using emergency extraction equipment. You would trust that the firefighters were proficient at using the equipment and that there was a high probability for success. In both examples, there is not a long period of time to review past experience, education, or performance to make a decision on if you should trust these individuals. Their roles play a critical piece of the puzzle to determine this swift trust.

Research into the area of swift trust 1 has found that the two leading factors to determining the strength of swift trust are the roles and the possibility for future collaboration. The first factor is in alignment with our examples above. The second also is the potential for working together in the future. Considering these two factors, it is imperative to both define your role in the analytics project often and reinforce the fact that there is a future project that is the natural follow to the current project. Performing these actions dramatically increases the probability of a team member or decision-maker forming a positive, swift trust relationship with you. Then you can build on this trust through your actions over the longer term.

  1. Kroeger, Frens, Girts Racko, and Brendan Burchell. “How to Create Trust Quickly: A Comparative Empirical Investigation of the Bases of Swift Trust.” Cambridge Journal of Economics 45, no. 1 (January 1, 2021): 129–50. doi:10.1093/cje/beaa041. ↩︎

CANA Director of Analytics Capabilities

An analytics professional that enjoys learning, teaching, and using analytical techniques and tools to answer challenging questions.