Are your employees trusting one another?
Trust plays a pivotal role in any kind of meaningful relationship, even on the job. If your employees don’t trust each other, the workflow may be slow and uncertain at times. On the other hand, coworkers that pull together harmoniously based on mutual trust and respect can accomplish a great deal to benefit the company and help them meet personal career goals. Here are ways that you can help your employees to overcome distrust and build comfortable camaraderie.
Build Teams Based on Complementary Qualities
Whether organising units for departments, teams, or committees, connect employees whose dispositions and skills are likely to blend seamlessly. For example, a Type A personality could be a natural fit where dynamic leadership is needed. Supporter-type personalities would likely work well with the leader to achieve the assigned objectives. Putting two assertive leaders together could create a competitive environment where it may be difficult to establish mutual trust.
Develop Fair Policies and Practices
Adopt policies and practices that do not discriminate on any basis. While this is the legal requirement anyway, make sure that you do not inadvertently cause friction by giving men all the high-level roles with women in supporting positions. Take the same approach for employees of diverse backgrounds. Aim for a mix of individuals who, while different, can learn from each other and build mutual respect. Look for ways to promote fair recognition of employees based on job performance criteria that everyone understands and agrees to.
Facilitate Employees Helping Each Other
Arrange certain job tasks to pair employees who can assist each other. This will provide opportunities and even the need to rely on each other and work through any different approaches to the work. Having to depend on a coworker will naturally build trust unless there are barriers that prevent it. Divide the work fairly and compensate each person equally so neither can complain about the other.
Avoid Displays of Favouritism or Criticism
Sometimes it is natural to have a favourite employee because of that person’s cooperative spirit or willingness to go above and beyond for the company. Conversely, it is possible to disfavour certain workers because of their attitude or views on certain things. Do not allow your preferences to show to the employees or others in the company. Treat everyone the same. In meetings, give all employees the chance to be heard. If budgets must be tightened, do it indiscriminately. Be friendly to all. If rewards or discipline are needed, handle them privately to prevent embarrassment or hard feelings.
Discourage Gossip and Rumours
Although it is impossible to keep employees from sharing personal concerns, keep important company information confidential and dispel any rumours through an internal memorandum or a meeting announcement. Divisive issues can separate employees into different groups that may not agree with each other, and this might help to breed distrust. Promote a positive attitude at the company to help prevent gossip about individual employees as well as negative attitudes.
Trust is a valuable trait that can help coworkers get along and build productive relationships on the job. The more they trust each other and get along, the more efficiently they are apt to carry out their work. Communicate clearly and fairly with all employees so everyone feels like a valued member of the organisation. Encourage teamwork in groups or pairs so people can get to know each other and develop respectful attitudes along with trust.