Love and marriage, apparently so the song goes, go together like a horse and carriage. But key to making any relationship work is trust.
Rumours swirling around Prime Minister Teresa May at the moment are accusing her of micro-managing – a leaked consultant report says she’s “acquiring a reputation of drawing in decisions and details to settle matters herself”. That could be interpreted as she’s not yet reached the point where she trusts her advisors.
Democrat George Clooney, when asked in the summer if he thought Donald Trump would become President of the United States, said he ‘trusted’ the American people to do the right thing. Mrs May could have too little trust; Mr Clooney, perhaps too much.
In any relationship, trust has to be shared value. There are literally thousands of websites on the Internet that describe how trust is key to making a relationship work. And the building blocks that form trust are key in business too.
When commissioning a video, it’s likely the client doesn’t know much about film-making. And it’s likely the producer of the video doesn’t know much about the business of the commissioning client. And that’s where the relationship starts. Through communication, the two sides work out a plan that will be win-win. The client shares what they want to video to achieve, what they want it to say, and how much they are willing to pay, and the video producer comes up with a solution that meets all the goals.
And if they can’t come up with a plan, they’re able to use their experience to demonstrate why those goals in the current state are unachievable. The trust comes here – the client should trust the video producer’s experience, and the video producer should trust the reasoning behind the client’s desired outcomes.
One of the main components to build trust, according to David K Williams, author of the book The 7 Non Negotiables of Winning is never to judge – but always to have empathy first and try to understand. The video producer will work to understand the client’s organisational, time and budget constraints. They don’t need to know all the details, but just respect there are possible barriers to deal with.
Likewise, the client doesn’t need to know the fine details of video making, but trust the producer and the video team are doing their best to ensure a first class outcome is reached. From interviewing to get the right message, to choosing the best possible shots that have been filmed, the client should understand the video company always commits to work for the common goal.
Trust doesn’t mean no communication. Part of building the trust on both sides is discovery. Questions about the process, curiosity about where the video will fit into the company’s overall communication strategy – the more both sides understand, the more there is an ability to trust.
Having mutual trust is the most powerful currency in building relationships. Once lost, it is almost impossible to regain. Author Ernest Hemingway is quoted as saying “The best way to learn if you can trust somebody is to trust them.” Apply to video making.