How to foster a culture of trust among your employees
According to one definition, trust is "reliance on the character, aptitude, power or truth of someone or something". Let's consider that definition for a second. You're trusting someone else to do the right thing.
Trust creates a sense of safety and is crucial for successful collaboration. When your team members feel secure with one another, they're more willing to open up, take acceptable risks and reveal their weaknesses. Without trust, there is less creativity, cooperation, innovative thinking and productivity because people spend more time protecting themselves.
So, what can you do as a leader to foster a culture of trust among your employees?
1. Make communication transparent
Establishing trust requires clear dialogue. There are different tactics you can use to get everyone in your team interacting with one another in an open, genuine and effective way.
Write a team mandate that outlines the team's mission and each member's responsibilities. At the initial team meeting, present this charter and urge each team member to ask questions and discuss their expectations.
2. Exercise leadership
If you want to develop trust in your team, show your colleagues that you trust them through leading by example. This means having faith in your team, co-workers and employer. Always remember your people are constantly looking for and receiving signals from you; make use of this chance to show genuine trust in others.
3. Discuss any trust issues
If there are trust issues in your team, it's critical to figure out what's causing these problems so you can devise a plan to address them.
Consider offering members of the team a survey to complete anonymously. Inquire about the group's degree of trust and why they believe there's a lack of confidence. After you've received all the results, gather everyone to discuss the issues.
TAKEAWAY: It's crucial to lead by example. Demonstrate your faith in your team members and your co-workers to show how vital trust is to you. For a team to be productive, it must exercise a high level of trust, or it won't achieve much. Team members who trust each other can accomplish what they set out to do...and more.