Kim Carpenter—speaker, trainer, executive coach, and founder of People at the Center—works with executive leaders and teams to build trust. She recently spoke for SHRM Texas Leaders (Society for Human Resource Management) on this very important topic. 

Carpenter is an internationally recognized thought leader who has been quoted in US News & World Report, regarding her views on successful career change strategies.

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She guides her clients to use the T.R.U.S.T. model to restore trust when it’s missing:

Test Your Assumptions and Conclusions. When someone experiences a lack of trust, they often lose a sense of what’s really true due to feeling “triggered” by the situation. By testing our assumptions and conclusions about others, it’s easier to come back to what’s really happening in the moment versus anticipating a negative outcome.

Relatedness shifts the perspective from a place of unrelated or disconnected to connected. When we feel more related to one another, we encapsulate a “we” mindset, versus “me against them”.

Understand Perspectives requires deep, active listening and openness to seeing all sides of a situation. By taking steps to understand another’s experience and point of view, you increase empathy and also help activate trust networks in the other person’s brain.

Shared Goals help you work together and co-create a vision. When you have a shared why, versus yours alone, you can create conversations to discuss challenges or conflicts  candidly.

Transparency builds more connection and reduces feelings of threat and fear that come up in stressful work situations. By having candid, clear and kind conversations, you calm the brain, stimulating rational thought.

What is the Financial Impact of Trust? 

When you’re living and working within a trustworthy community, it means you feel comfortable taking risks, experimenting, allowing yourself to be vulnerable, and admitting when you’re wrong. You can do this without fear of negative consequences. 

Put more concretely:

Employees operating in an environment that lacks trust are more likely to leave. The Association for Talent Development found that the average training cost per employee is $1,252, and that employers dedicate an average of 33 hours of training time to new hires. 

Employees operating in an environment that lacks trust are less engaged and productive. Gallup recently conducted a study around employee engagement, finding that disengaged employees have a 37% higher absenteeism rate, resulting in 18% lower productivity and 15% lower profitability. 

Gallup also estimates that an average of 17.2% of any given organization’s workforce is actively disengaged. 

Building trust among your team is an important piece of the success puzzle. Fortunately, by following these guidelines, you’re on your way toward a more peaceful, collaborative, and trusting environment. 

Kim Carpenter and People at the Center

Kim Carpenter is a global speaker, trainer and executive leadership coach on the cutting edge of the movement to bring more humanity into the workplace. The founder of World Changing Women© and People at the Center©, Kim specializes in working with leaders and their teams to hone communication skills, make difficult but empowered changes, and develop thriving company cultures that honor the human and boost the bottom line. 

You can catch her at the upcoming Society for HR Management Conference in Austin, TX, The Path Forward: Resignation to Retention on August 4, 2023. 

She will also be speaking virtually for the Association for Talent Development about Building Trust at Work on July 26, 2023. 

To learn more about Kim Carpenter, visit

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