Workplace culture

What About Trust? Building Trust in the Workplace

January 21, 2021

Trust is a two-way street; employers must trust their employees and earn their trust in return. It is an essential component of a healthy and successful workplace. Studies have shown that workplaces where strong trust is present have higher levels of employee engagement, productivity, and innovation, with lower turnover rates than competitors.

By now, you may be asking yourself, “Is there trust in my organization?”

In the employer–employee context, trust means believing that both parties are fulfilling their duties and responsibilities in the workplace to the best of their ability. It is essentially an act of faith; however, some employers do not have this faith in their employees, and in turn, their employees do not trust them.

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Where trust is absent, the consequences are evident. Employers micromanage every aspect of their employees’ work, which leads to low employee engagement and productivity. Employees are less likely to go the extra mile or share ideas for fear that their efforts won’t be supported or recognized. It should be no surprise that turnover rates are high in these situations.

Let’s discuss what measures you can take so you can feel confident trusting your employees and how you can earn their trust in return. Download our FREE Guide to Trusting Your Team to Get the Job Done for some actionable tips our team of experts has created.
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If you aren’t sure whether employees feel trusted, ask them! Bear in mind, though, that bluntly asking them may not get you their true answers. Asking the right questions in the right way is important to help you better understand their true feelings towards the organization. Our surveys and forms tool makes it easy to create surveys and obtain valuable feedback from your employees. Allowing employees to provide feedback anonymously can help them feel more comfortable telling you the truth without worrying about negative repercussions. Some questions you may want to ask include:

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Do you feel you
have t
he tools to
do your job?



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Do you feel like your manager supports you in your work?



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On a scale of 1 to 10, rate your sense of responsibility for your work.



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Do you believe you can bring questions and feedback to your manager?

And so on!

One way of demonstrating trust is through delegation. Your time is limited, and it’s best spent doing high-value tasks. When a manager hands off tasks but doesn’t give the employee the responsibility and information to complete the task without them, it isn’t valuable delegation. It actually shows a lack of trust. By giving your team more valuable work and the accountability to do it, you’ll find they are more likely to put in the effort to do a good job, and it makes you a better leader, too!

There are many benefits to proper delegation and trusting in your team to get the job done. Let’s look at an example. Say you’re responsible for a monthly mailer to clients and, until now, you usually do your research, pick some topics, write about them, and send it off. On top of all your other responsibilities, it’s a lot of work. You’ve realized this is very time-consuming and something you could easily delegate to someone (or even a few people) on your team. So, you start with a meeting to communicate how to get the topics and how to write the mailer affectively. Then, you set a deadline, so your team member knows how much time they have, and you set up a meeting half-way to check-in on progress and give helpful advice. Turns out, they had some really great ideas and the mailer is a success.

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Of course, you’re still responsible for the tasks you delegate getting done, so you need to set clear expectations and monitor progress. It’s a fine balance, but trusting your team and helping your employees develop will make your workplace better and make you a better leader.

 

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