Tuesday, 22.10.2019

How to build trust and transparency in a team?

How to build trust and transparency in a team?

        You probably know how important trust is in everybody's life and how many problems arise from a the lack of it. What is trust? According to the PWN dictionary, it is a belief that someone's words, deeds or promises are true and that this person has specific skills and can use them properly. Business-wise, trust is first of all a relationship that is created between people who cooperate and it is on this basis that a decision is made about how long it will last and what effects it will bring.

        Trust is a value that creates and keeps in check individual social groups, including employees. Thanks to it, the team gets along better, cooperates, understands messages and functions in everyday work without major obstacles. Trust can be compared to a porcelain figurine which is very easy to break. However, depending on the extent of the damage, it is very difficult to rebuild it. It may also happen that it cannot be repaired at all.


Lack of trust - a growing problem of large organizations?

        “It’s a dog-eat-dog world” - It is precisely this conviction that still prevails in Poland where the level of trust happens to be very low. According to a 2018 CBOS survey* in, more than ¾ of respondents believe that one should be cautious when dealing with others. In business, only 34% of respondents said that placing trust in business partners is beneficial. However, still more people say that placing trust in business partners does not end well - 37%. Despite this, as many as 81% of Poles unequivocally state that they trust the people they work with the most.

        A total lack of trust is a huge problem in a team. Excessive caution towards the people around us can be a source of misunderstandings and conflicts. Distrust can disrupt your work rhythm and effectiveness, and can affect the performance of your team as a whole. Mutual trust is the basis for mobilization and motivation of employees to achieve a common goal. Every leader knows that this is an essential foundation for healthy cooperation but not everyone is aware of how much work it takes to build it.

Trust building - a tedious and lengthy process?

        The main role in team building is played by the leader. His or her values and approach have the greatest influence on how the team will function and how its members will treat each other. As you can guess, the team's trust in the leader is of prime importance. Without this, the team can achieve its goals but at a much higher cost of time, energy and often money, even though they may be  accompanied by a carefully prepared action plan.

        Trust building is a long process that must be accompanied by an open attitude and honest communication. This process is also supported by the way in which employees are treated. It is worth making sure that the whole team is aware of the partnership between equal, qualified and competent partners. Trust also encourages attentive and active listening, discussion and taking into account opinions of others. Reliability plays an equally important role - keeping promises and acting on what has been agreed or said. Trust is not a one-off matter that can be ticked off from the “to do" list. Once achieved, it must becontinuously  nurtured. This applies to both the leader and each an every member of the team.

The biggest mistake in building trust.

        Trust building is like a winding, bumpy road. In order to avoid an accident on the road and to omit visible obstacles, you have to work hard and often slow down. This is exactly what makes the process so time-consuming. But what should you do to ensure that what your team has been working on for so long doesn't fall apart on the first corner? Below is a list of things that should be avoided to make the trust in the team a transparent issue:

1. No or closed communication.

2. Unequal treatment of team members.

3. Inconsistencies

4. Making incomprehensible decisions and not explaining their purpose

5. Breaking promises.

6. Acting inconsistently with the rules adopted in/by the team.

7. Not paying attention to the behaviour, feelings and ideas of the team members

        Team trust is not only a good practice thanks to which there are friendly relations between employees and a nice atmosphere in the organization. It is the company's business card in the eyes of co-workers, customers and suppliers. This is one of the factors that influences the company's reputation and builds an attractive employer's brand towards the micro and macro environment of the enterprise. This may result in application growth from qualified candidates, higher number of quality orders from customers, as well as better contact with suppliers. If your team is aware of the importance of the atmosphere based on long-term trust among co-workers and its management, you can expect only fruitful profits!

        If you would like to consult us on how to build, increase or determine the level of trust in your team, please contact us.

Full test results are given below: