What is a Trust

Trust is the belief one has over the capacity or the sincerity of one person, group or entity. Trust is based on the knowledge of the party’s past performance or sometimes just on the perception or the image of the party. Trust is having confidence or faith in the competence of the other party. Trust is awarded to a person when a person or entity is deemed trustworthy.

Trust is important in interpersonal relationships of people be it for personal, romantic or familial relationships but also in business and society in general. Trust may be broken by the lack of benevolence or competence of a person but it is said that in personal relationships it is much easier to forgive people who lack competence than it is to forgive people who lack benevolence. When someone lacks competence, you have the option to rely on others for the needs that he cannot fulfill. When someone lacks benevolence of the is not good-natured then it may be difficult to deal with the person especially in matters that are very important or require the empathy and the decency of a person. When someone betrays your trust, as in friendships, when you realize that the person is not really kind then you will find it hard to sustain the relationship with this friend. And this is often more painful than choosing to abandon relationships because of the trust broken by the lack of benevolence.

When people place their trust or faith in someone, then this trust allows people to be more open to this person and allows for certain decisions to be made or actions taken. As in business relationships, the lack of trust will result in the lack of transactions or business deals between two parties. It has been said that trust cannot be measured because it is internal. But everyone agrees that trust is important for societies to function.

Most business or economic relations are based on trust. When a person trusts a brand or a company then he is willing to place his resources on the party. This is why big corporations invest in projecting a whole, integrated image and spend on research and development as well as brand management. When a company is a trusted company then people have no problem patronizing the products of the company. This is part of James S. Coleman’s Foundations of Social Theory. The theory includes the explanation that when a party is trustworthy then the “trustor” made the right decision of trusting the trustee and is better off than if he did not place his trust on the party.

In other studies, the other factors affecting trust was also studied. It is said that a person who has less power or lower or no authority do not truly trust the other in the moral sense. This is because people who are dependent often have no choice but to place his trust on those with authority. In situations like this coercion is seen as a factor in the placement of trust.


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