Building the Emotional Bank Account: When to Save and When to Spend

Building the Emotional Bank Account: When to Save and When to Spend

Many people haven’t heard of or don’t understand the emotional bank account. Just like a monetary account, the emotional bank account works with trust instead of dollars. You make deposits, save up, and make withdraws. However, as a leader, it is important to understand the different ways to make deposits and reduce withdraws.

  1. Getting to know the individual: It is one thing to see someone every day and say hello, it is another to truly get to know them. Start by listening to them. Don’t just shake your head and nod in agreement but get to know the person. Empathize with them. Act with kindness and genuine thought, as this will slowly help you make deposits.

  2. Be punctual and maintain commitments: If you set a meeting for a specific time, make sure you’re there. The other person has adjusted their schedule to be punctual and you should do the same. It is also important to simply do what you say you are going to do. Whether its performing a task or making a call, if you commit to it, make sure you accomplish it.
  3. Make sure your expectations are clear: Despite some claims, no one is a mind reader. Make sure that you clarify your expectations for both the task at hand and the overall goals of the company. By effectively communicating what you expect, you build a stronger foundation for trust and accountability.
  4. Keeping things in perspective: It is easy for things to get out of hand. Something that started as a small issue can turn into a big problem if they aren’t taken care of in a timely manner. Taking care of the little things as well as doing the little things can show an increased level of care and respect. Whether you are helping out by taking on a small task or just sharing a smile, keeping things in perspective is an easy way to build up that bank account.
  5. Owning it when you have to make a withdrawal: Whether it was a mistake or an oversight, things happen. Being able to take ownership of the mistake is an important part of maintaining trust after a withdrawal has been made. An apology or a correction is an easy way to counteract the error and helps to make sure it doesn't happen again.

As a leader, making deposits into the emotional bank account sets you up for building and maintaining better relationships in the future. Positions of leadership are built on a foundation of trust that can be constructed with every deposit you are able to make into the emotional bank account.