The Building Trust 60-Day Workout

Powerful daily lessons proven to build trust at work and at home

Much of the interpersonal, family, and team dysfunction that I’ve witnessed through the years has been caused by a lack of trust between members. If your goals depend on other people and you struggle accomplishing them, this book will arm you with many practical approaches to get unstuck.

I’ve also lived the thrill of building many teams and coaching countless others to achieve very high levels of mutual trust. The unity, mojo, and performance that arises when members trust each other is joyous. In such an environment, we can be ourselves, count on each other, and constructively deal with shared challenges with a fraction of the typical stress.

Why this Book Exists

Okay, but why write this book? Why should you, the reader, actively build trust?

First, too many teams of highly-talented and dedicated people hit a wall of frustration and performance because they are stuck in what appear to be intractable problems when the actual root cause is mistrust among the members. When safety is lacking, people withhold information and opinions, posturing becomes routine, and mediocrity abounds. Once safety is restored, it’s like a logjam breaks: the team rediscovers its latent energy to meet their challenges. I’ve assisted many groups through this difficulty by applying the lessons included in this book, and this book is my opportunity to share the wealth.

Second, it’s been my experience that some really great people have blind spots on the impact we have on our work and home relationships. We sow seeds of mistrust without even knowing it, label others as untrustworthy, and then react accordingly. Throughout these 60 lessons, I hope to flip on the light switch so we can see what we’re actually doing with, and to, those around us.

Finally, I aim for the reader to share in the pure joy that comes with genuine trust. There is nothing quite like it. Love is wonderful, but love is not required to build trust. To fully trust another person is the height of vulnerability and security, while to have earned another person’s trust is a great honor and rare privilege. To be trusted is to be accepted – and respected – as the unique person you are. Does it get any better?

So I welcome you to this workout for building trust in your relationships. This book is designed for you if:
• You know that trust matters and want a practical resource to make it happen,
• You want more meaningful and free-flowing connections with others in your life,
• You are tired of waiting for others to build or restore your trust in them,
• You want to know why some people press your do not trust button, and when you might be pressing theirs,
• You have had enough theory; it’s time for specific, practical, and proven strategies and actions,
• You are open-minded and willing to extend trust to others under the right circumstances, and
• You are ready to commit yourself, as with any workout, to make changes.

This book is not for you if:
• You believe the amount of trust in your life is other people’s responsibility.

This book was written on the eleventh anniversary of the founding of Building Trust, LLC, and is based on a lifetime of in-the-trenches experience with these issues. I grew up in a family environment that was challenged by severe and persistent mental illness… that offered precious little day-to-day trust. (For the complete story, read On My Own, Recollections of an Unlikely CEO.)

Early Praise for The Building Trust 60-Day Workout:

“Wisdom doesn’t come quickly. Building Trust is a daily devotional where each page explores a profound insight on the slow process of learning to build trust at home, work, and in your community. Bruce has been teaching and thinking deeply about this topic for a long time. His humble wisdom and good humor shine through this book as the pragmatic meditation of a seasoned leader.

I wouldn’t suggest skimming through the pages to get a sense of Bruce’s message. Sure, you can do it, but it will be like flying by amazing works of art. The value is in the reflection. What does this say to me? Have I encountered a similar situation? How did I fall short? How might I be a better human? 

I especially liked the meditation on the cost of mistrust. Business leaders who fail to build trust don’t see the missed opportunities and costs they incur. Wasted time, lost productivity, employee and customer turnover, poor health carry a cumulative burden. As Bruce recommends, take steps today to counter mistrust, even if the outcomes aren’t visible overnight. Read this book, slowly, thoughtfully.”

Ty Hagler

Principal, Trig

“I appreciate Bruce’s focus on taking personal responsibility for our relationships and the level of trust attained. He makes it clear that trust is ultimately about being trustworthy and valuing others. This isn’t just true for 60 days, but should be applied daily as a lifelong exercise regime. Bruce presents this in an engaging, down-to-earth, and extremely practical way. He demonstrates the humility necessary to build trust that lasts.

One comes away from reading The Building Trust 60-Day Workout with a knowledge that humility, self-awareness, and honesty with ourselves and others is essential to being trustworthy and building trusting relationships. Whether in our vocation, relationships or family, we all have influence. Influence flows out of character, and a foundational aspect of character is trustworthiness. Bruce’s book and insights have emphasized this in a unique and very beneficial way.”

Joel Montgomery, PE, MSM, ICMA-CM

Director of Administration/City Manager City of Wooster, Ohio

The Building Trust 60-Day Workout is a daily guide for building more meaningful relationships in your personal and/or work life and focuses on what works in the real world. Each day emphasizes a specific topic for building trust, describes real world examples on that topic and challenges you with a call for action. This is an easy read that I find myself picking up over and over again to reinforce what I can do to build more trust and connect with others, especially in challenging relationships.”

Rhonda Billman

Assistant Director, Wooster Campus of The Ohio State University, CFAES

“In The Building Trust 60-Day Workout, you’ll learn many important lessons, and like any workout, it won’t be easy, and it won’t be quick. But Bruce’s own experiences and vulnerability shed light on just about any situation you could find yourself in, and he shares practical insights to help build trusting relationships at home or at work. You’ll want to refer back to this book again and again.”

Paul Spiegelman

Entrepreneur, Author, and Co-Founder, Small Giants Community

“I have been a business leader for over 20 years, and continue to be challenged to be better through Bruce’s inspirational words and Building Trust resources. We are a healthier organization because many staff members have attended Bruce’s two-day workshops. We still need to continually practice true vulnerability in building stronger relationships throughout our organization, and I am excited to share Bruce’s new book The Building Trust 60-Day Workout with my staff.”

Judy Delaney

President & CEO, Goodwill Industries of Wayne & Holmes Counties, Inc.

The Building Trust 60-Day Workout demonstrates what an architect and master builder of trust Bruce Hendrick is. Through a concise, easy to understand blueprint, it is designed to help us strengthen our trust muscles.”

Brian E. Krebs

Attorney

“As an entrepreneur for over 25 years, I’ve learned that trust as a foundation determines the health of our team. This is one of the many reasons I love Bruce and his book. The Building Trust 60 Day Workout is practical, thought-provoking, and action-oriented. It’s a book we will use at imageOne to help reinforce and enhance our culture.”

Rob Dube

President, imageOne

“As Bruce would remind us all: building trust requires showing trust. The first day on my new job leading RBB (Bruce’s electronic manufacturing business), I walked into his office and written in large letters on his whiteboard was, ‘I don’t know, have you asked Jim yet?’ This was not an abdication of his authority, but a bold statement of his trust in me. He demonstrated his passion for building trust with no uncertainty.”

Jim Tennant

Former President, RBB