Ten ways to gain your employees’ — and your boss’s — trust
  • leadership
  • Blog post

Ten ways to gain your employees’ — and your boss’s — trust

You can’t manage effectively without trust. When people trust you, they’re willing to do what you say without being continually reminded, because they know you have the best interests of all at heart. So how can you build trust among the employees who report to you?

It’s a process, not an event. And it involves a number of behaviors that people need to see you modeling over time. Here are seven of them:

  1. Telling the truth, even when it’s difficult or painful. (This doesn’t necessarily equate to telling all you know; it does mean making sure everything you do tell is factual.)
  2. Delivering both the good news and the bad.
  3. Respecting confidentiality.
  4. Taking responsibility for your mistakes and resisting the temptation to find scapegoats.
  5. Recognizing the value of ideas that compete with your own; sometimes the employee is right!
  6. Having the courage to say “I don’t know” when you don’t.
  7. Putting the organization’s goals above your own. Employees see through self-seekers.

Gaining the trust of your boss may involve other behaviors. Among them:

  1. Providing the information decision makers need to make wise choices.
  2. Carefully analyzing proposals before making them.
  3. Identifying both the potential upsides and downsides of your suggestions.

Source: “Increase Your Influence at Work,” by McIntosh and Luecke.

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