If you have a problem and are looking for a business to help you get the solution, how do you know who you can trust? Furthermore, which business should you approach?
There are so many businesses that might help you with a problem, but how do you choose and feel confident that you can trust them to do a good job at the right price for you?
Let’s talk about engaging with a therapy business because many people might not initially consider therapy as a business, but of course, it is.
If you are looking for a service like counselling or hypnotherapy where you may need to talk about personal issues, how do you know that that that service is confidential and can be trusted with your personal information?
Let’s face it, talking about buying a product like a new pair of shoes can be a challenge if you are looking for something particular, but talking about your personal problems can feel a lot harder because it’s something we don’t do so often.
Yet if you have the right person to talk to, who really listens and has the knowledge and skills to help you, what was a challenge becomes so much easier.
What we are talking about is often related to the fear of the unknown.
It could also be about negative previous experiences.
So the first reason why trust is important is that it’s the start of a journey to access a service that will lead to change.
You might be looking for a solution with that change, or maybe it’s to feel better.
But what is trust?
In this blog, I am talking about trust, not a Business Trust.
Trust means different things to different people. In business, it means faith or belief in getting what you are told you will get.
It’s about peace of mind and getting a good fit. You might even get more than you thought you might get.
It’s easy to develop trust in a business that offers products because it is a tangible item. You can see the quality. You can compare the price and delivery speed and get an overall measure of your satisfaction. However, if the product doesn’t meet the description or your expectations, you may not trust that business to deliver the quality expected for future orders, resulting in a reduction in your trust for them.
It’s a different matter with therapy because it often isn’t about comparing apples with apples. Some therapists have extensive training while others have shorter courses. Some therapists charge by the hour; others provide packages. Some offer longer sessions; others provide audio recordings. Some have years of experience and qualifications, while others don’t. There may even be differences between group sessions or individual face to face or online services.
For the business, trust is something that can take some time to develop. But, on the other hand, trust can be quickly destroyed by people, as you can see from the above example.
Trust is a concept that enables businesses to work with businesses and customers to buy services.
Building trust is about building a relationship that can be flexible and developed with confidence. It’s about the business exercising accountability and responsibility to provide good service.
Trust is built on principles such as:
- Helping the other person
- Wanting to work together
Consequently, the second reason why trust is important is that it’s about information sharing and good communication. Good communication is vital for any business, so you know what is on offer.
All businesses need trust.
Hi, I’m Linda Witchell. My business is called Awaken the Change. I help stress and anxious people or others with grief and loss who want to change to learn to live and love life again. I have a big toolkit of knowledge and skills, including hypnotherapy, counselling, coaching and teaching to help you.
But how do you know if you can trust my business?
I am very aware that coming to see someone like me with a problem that you want to change might be difficult. For some people, it takes guts to admit that you have a problem, and it might feel scary to talk about it.
Perhaps you think the problem is too big or too small or even a stupid thing.
It might be about generally worrying about things or being more specific, like feeling nervous in social gatherings.
The issue could be related to work or relationships or even feeling stressed because you lacked confidence in golf after an embarrassing shot a few months ago.
If you have never seen a therapist before, you might ask yourself if you can cope a bit longer because you know that you can trust yourself.
But when you are in a stressful situation, you sometimes wonder if you can trust yourself to make the right decisions because you are overwhelmed by the stress and anxiety. In other words, you doubt yourself. That makes you feel nervous, and you might start to lack confidence. So then you seem to focus on all the things that you can’t do or all the things that are not going well in your life.
It’s a bit like buying a car. When you decide to buy a certain model, you keep seeing that car model on the road. Likewise, when we have a problem we focus on it and often get stuck in a cycle of negative thoughts, feelings and behaviours.
Some people start drinking alcohol, but that will only help for a while and will probably make things worse if you continue.
You might have thought about contacting your doctor, which is a good idea if you have a medical problem.
You might wonder about other help and think about approaching a business like mine. But I’m a private practitioner, and that involves money.
You would need to trust the therapist’s skills and knowledge to find you the solution.
You would also need to have faith in the person to keep your personal information safe.
Until you get to know a therapist like me, all you can use to inform you is branding, images, words, and checking membership of professional bodies or going on the recommendations of others.
I believe that trust is an essential part of ethical businesses.
The third reason why trust is important is that it’s about relationship building.
This could be developing a relationship with an individual or business ethics in general.
But how do you assess a trustworthy business?
Ways to assess trust in a therapy business
Assessing the trustworthiness of any business can be difficult. But if you have a positive mindset to change and feel better, it will help.
You could look for the business website and gather information there. Do you think that the therapist understands your problem?
You could assess the therapist by going to directories and professional membership sites to look up the person’s credentials. For example, a counsellor might be registered with the National Counselling Society. A hypnotherapist might be registered with the National Hypnotherapy Society or the Complementary and Natural Healthcare Council (CNHC). But not every practitioner is a member of these organisations. Furthermore, there are lots more professional membership sites across the world.
Nevertheless, gathering information can benchmark the standards and expectations usually offered by a counselling or hypnotherapy business.
You could use social media to search for proof from others who have used the service but some of those recommendations may not be true.
You could also look for endorsements of knowledge and skills either from individuals or from accredited qualifications. However, although this might help, that doesn’t mean that the therapist will help you get the results to trust through the length of time in business. This measure can be quite good as someone untrustworthy with a bad reputation usually won’t be in business very long.
You could use yourself as an assessment tool. For example, do you like the therapist? Do you feel that they are sincere and empathetic to your problem? Are they listening to what you are saying?
One method is by using the Trust Equation. This is a scientifically developed method of helping businesses with trust developed by Charles H. Green et al. This resulted in the production of three books: The Trusted Advisor, Trust-Based Selling, and The Trusted Advisor Fieldbook.
The equation is: T = (C + R + I) / SO
T = Trust
This is the willingness or ability to rely on others.
C = Perception of Credibility
This is believing what someone says.
R = Perception of Reliability
This is trusting what someone does.
I = Intimacy
This means entrusting someone with something.
SO = Perception of Self-Orientation
This is about self-awareness and focus, i.e. whether your focus is primarily on yourself or others.
All you need to do to use this equation is to give each part a score.
But remember that trust is a two-way process. First, a therapist wants to trust you that you are seeking therapy for the reasons that you state. Second, they want to believe that you are also truthful and wanting to change.
Finally, trust is an important part of any business, especially a hypnotherapy and counselling business, because it’s about taking the first step forward to change; it involves good communication and the development of a special, professional relationship.