All strong, effective relationships are built on trust: when it comes to employee engagement, trust is a critical driver of loyalty and performance – happy staff who enjoy their work, gain personal satisfaction from working hard and contributing to the success of the business.
It’s in this type of environment that employees are willing to go the extra mile and businesses achieve real growth and a competitive edge.
The good news is that building and maintaining the trust of your employees isn’t rocket science – but it does require commitment from the top in how they lead by example.
Four simple but powerful ways to create trust, and values that you should encourage throughout the business, are:
1. Honesty and integrity
The foundations of trust in any type of relationship. Be truthful in every aspect of business, not just interactions with employees – strive to maintain a reputation of honesty. Keep promises. Be genuine. Lead a business people can believe in.
Regardless of hierarchal structure, treat every individual with politeness and consideration in all interactions. Make employees feel part of the team, with an important contribution to make. Be fair and consistent. Put people at ease.
Openness and clarity help to prevent rumours from developing. Don’t withhold information. Encourage staff to share their views. Listen to suggestions, comments and concerns and respond to employees’ questions.
4. Recognition and reward
Demonstrate that you acknowledge, appreciate and value employees’ contributions. Praise sincerely and reward consistently. Of course you might consider a reward and recognition programme but don’t underestimate the impact of simply saying ‘thank you’.
Where there’s no trust, there’s no passion – and this could hold your business back from reaching its full potential