OnPoint, LLC

Cultivating a culture of trust

Reflect on someone that you trust completely. You are confident that person will look out for your best interest or will meet his commitments. Now think about your co-workers. Do most of them meet that description? Conversely, how would they assess your trustworthiness? High performance, agile organizations require a high level of trust, and those of us in a leadership position must cultivate a culture of trust. Here are three tips for doing so.

Bury the hatchet
It is not possible to hold a grudge and simultaneously trust the person who is the object of the grudge. As leaders, we need to discipline ourselves to let go of animosity and instead focus on the work to be accomplished. Further, we need to coach everyone on our teams to do the same.

Turn off the email flame-thrower
Flaming emails are a sure sign of a low-trust environment. If you feel the need to correct or admonish someone, do it in person rather than sending an email with a broad “cc” list. If you are copied on such an exchange by someone on your team, have a word (not an email) with the sender and coach him on proper email etiquette.

Make commitments and then meet them
Your customers, co-workers, and team members rely on information from you in order to do their jobs. When asked to provide some information or a deliverable, don’t just say, “I’ll get it to you.” Instead, say, “I’ll get send it to you at Tuesday afternoon at 2 pm,” then do it. Make it a habit to set expectations and then meet them. Before long, others will learn to trust you to get the job done.

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OnPoint, LLC