Trust must exist between managers and their team members.
Without trust, your staff will not feel confident in their employment status, and will not rely on your word.
Whether you are a new supervisor who has simply not gained the trust of the employees, or you have done something to break the trust between your staff and yourself, there are ways to foster faith and confidence at the workplace with the suggestions below.
Be Honest – The most important and obvious way to make sure your employees believe what you say is to never betray their trust in the first place. Sometimes managers choose to lie to protect sensitive company information, such as possible mergers or future layoffs. Managers can believe they are looking out for their employees and preventing them from undue stress by keeping certain pieces of news from them.
Or, supervisors can hide the truth from team members when it comes to their performance or work efforts not to hurt their feelings. However, if staff finds out that the manager was not upfront and honest, the trust that was there before will be gone. Therefore, it is advisable for a supervisor to say that he or she cannot comment on certain facts or say the brutal, but honest truth, rather than lie.
Own Up to Your Mistakes – If you had already broken your staff’s trust, you can work hard to get it back. It will not happen overnight, but with renewed dedication to honesty, you can make sure your employees start to believe you once again.
The first step to take is to speak to the individual or group of workers and take responsibility for your mistake. Tell your staff members that their faith in you is very important, and if they will try to reinstate their trust in you, you will do everything possible not to let them down again.
Get Credibility – Especially for new managers, getting credibility is essential to fostering employee trust. A new boss who comes in and expects change without really learning what is realistic or not will not win any points with the employees.
Therefore, supervisors need to take time to get to know their staff, workflows, limitations and the corporate culture before workers will start to feel comfortable that the new boss understands what is going on. Take the time to build rapport with your department if you want to create an honest and trusting environment.
Trust is a vital part of any functioning work environment. If your employees don’t believe what you say, they will likely not respect or follow your vision. Put in time and effort into fostering trust in your workplace.
Senior Trainer & Consultant