Date of this Version
Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes
Trust is critical for organizations, effective management, and efficient negotiations, yet trust violations are common. Prior work has often assumed trust to be fragile—easily broken and difficult to repair. We investigate this proposition in a laboratory study and find that trust harmed by untrustworthy behavior can be effectively restored when individuals observe a consistent series of trustworthy actions. Trust harmed by the same untrustworthy actions and deception, however, never fully recovers—even when deceived participants receive a promise, an apology, and observe a consistent series of trustworthy actions. We also find that a promise to change behaviour can significantly speed the trust recovery process, but prior deception harms the effectiveness of a promise in accelerating trust recovery.
Deception, negotiation, trust, trust repair
Schweitzer, M. E., Hershey, J. C., & Bradlow, E. T. (2006). Promises and Lies: Restoring Violated Trust. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 101 (1), 1-19. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.obhdp.2006.05.005
Date Posted: 27 November 2017
This document has been peer reviewed.