Background: I recently started a role which has skip levels (we didn't have such things at my last company). In preparation I listened to the M-T podcasts on it and thought I was reasonably prepared.
The experience was a strange one - because the so-called skip-level was a one-on-one (virtual/phone call) with my senior manager. I can appreciate why he did it that way - we're an international team and getting all his skips together would have been hard to organise. However, even as a one-on-one it was awkward. There was no set agenda, and apart from a few meetings and my interview, I hadn't really had much time with him before to know what to expect. During the meeting he asked me about my comfort in my role, any roadblocks and for feedback on my manager.
Onto the reason for this post. Because we hadn't spoken much before, I didn't know much about him - his DISC or his goals for the team /org etc. And, unfortunately, I didn't have much trust or confidence in what he might do with what I told him (based on one of my experiences in the role so far). So, I evaded giving too much feedback on the role and my manager etc, and tried to use the meeting to get to know him better - his history, how he sees the team evolve. My asking of questions didn't seem to satisfy him and he implied he wanted solid responses that he could act on (my thought now is he is D/C in DISC).
Question: What advice would people give on building trust into a relationship with a remote senior manager, or alternatively, what is the best way to handle a one-on-one with a senior manager that you don't fully trust yet?
Any advice welcome!