A few years ago, 1,500 managers responded to an Industry Week poll when asked to rate the level of trust in today’s workplace. The grade they gave was only a “C.” Now as it was then, trust is becoming both more elusive and more important. Trust ensures productive, satisfying, and long-term relationships in any type of organization or team. Organizations with high trust levels often have
• Increased focus on leadership as opposed to the task of managing.
• Quality partnerships between all types of people (team members, customers, suppliers, etc.).
• Better cross-team collaboration.
• More team based organizations and projects.
• Greater employee commitment and loyalty.
Is your team cohesive? Do your members work well with internal and external customers? What would members on your team say if you asked them, “What level of trust do you have in the organization?”
The following elements have been identified as key factors in the level of trust within an organization both as an individual contributor and as a team:
Results + Integrity + Concern = Level of Trust (Robert Shaw)
Individual contributor: Follows through on business commitments
1. Has a long-term, customer- and market-based vision
2. Establishes clear, ambitious and measurable performance targets
3. Has consensus on key targets and measures
4. Celebrates accomplishments
Act with Integrity
Individual Contributor: Behaves in a consistent manner
1. Has a clear purpose and guidelines for working together
2. Openly shares essential information about the business
Individual Contributor: Promotes the well-being of others
1. There is a feeling of one vision, one organization, one team
2. Peoples’ contribution are recognized and appreciated
3. Everyone benefits when business goals are met
As you review these elements for developing trust within an organization, which of these three areas do you feel your team needs to improve the most? Why? With this in mind and understanding the why, what are the three most important things your team could do right now to improve the team’s level of trust.
This is just a beginning as your team moves forward to raise their level of trust. As this is accomplished there will be more robust communication within the team and greater productivity as all work towards a common goal. Teamwork makes beautiful music.