In Stephen Covey’s book The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, he describes a concept which is essential for any constructive, successful relationship. It is the concept of an Emotional Bank Account, and it is pivotal to any effective Relationship Marketing Strategy.
An age old banking fundamental is that you have to make a deposit first into your account prior to withdrawing funds. An Emotional Bank Account is a metaphor that describes the amount of trust and goodwill that’s been built up in a relationship. It’s the feeling of safeness you have with another human being. If deposits are made into an Emotional Bank Account (or your Relationship Account) through courtesy, kindness, honesty, and keeping my commitments to you etc., I build up a reserve. Your trust toward me becomes higher, and I can call upon that trust many times if I need to. I can even make mistakes and that trust level, that emotional reserve, will compensate for it.
However, it will bankrupt your relationship if you are always making withdrawals without putting anything in.
Therefore it becomes important to constantly monitor your emotional bank balance with any relationship. When you know how much you have in the relationship bank, you will never be caught in the situation of making a withdrawal prematurely.
When you are evaluating your balance, keep two very important things in mind:
- Withdrawals can be conscience acts such as a favor or asking for support on something, or they can be subconscious acts such as being unreliable or talking negatively about others when they’re not around.
- Deposits need to be made in the other person’s frame of reference not yours! What you consider to be a deposit, might not be a deposit to the other person.
Unless you understand how the other person values a deposit, you won’t know what matters to them. We are subjective people. How each and every person views the world around them is unique