Another element of good communication commonly brought up by the missionaries is that of trust.
One elder suggested that establishing trust is crucial–beginning with the first impression! Because the first impression may be the only impression for many who meet the missionaries, it is crucial to develop that trust immediately. Preach My Gospel has some helpful feedback on how to make these first impressions go well:
The first few moments with investigators are very important. Investigators must learn to trust you. Begin your first visit in a warm, respectful, genuine manner. Ask a few simple questions to help you understand their religious background and their expectations regarding your visits. For example, ask, “What role has religion played in your life?” Do not, however, ask personal questions that would make them uncomfortable.
Without establishing basic trust, those who meet the missionaries will not be receptive or open to listening to the message of the gospel that the missionaries desire to share. In addition to following the suggestions of Preach My Gospel, missionaries can help establish trust by maintaining a standard of neat, clean dress. Missionaries also always ask if there is anything they can do to serve those they meet. By keeping a respectable and approachable appearance and volunteering to help others, those they come in contact with are less likely to be distrustful and are more open to hearing a message from the missionaries.
Once trust has been established, the hearts of those we teach will be softened and receptive to feeling the Spirit and will be more likely to take to heart the gospel we have to share.