How to build employee trust with leadership and data
Trust is a human emotion that’s hard to gain but so easy to compromise. More than build trustful relationships it’s about keeping that level of trust. That is the real challenge. Applying that challenge to workplace environments means that team managers need to adjust how they handle employee trust in their own management.
Employee trust is starting to become an even bigger cornerstone in building successful workforce teams. Applying that level of commitment to trust in the workplace environment is the difference-maker in building engaged work teams. The more reliable your peers are to you, the more you are willing to give honest and fair information to them.
HR managers are focusing more on the relationship between employee trust and productivity. A study by LeadershipIQ shows that 32% of workers say that the feeling of trust they feel about their boss drives their desire to stay or go. Only 20% strongly trust their top management personnel while 44% don’t trust or strongly distrusts.
With these type of numbers, it’s easy to understand why talent retention, and consequently talent growth, is hard to achieve. However, that directly affects productivity. When people don’t feel fulfilled in their workplace, they are more likely to fail company goals.
We reflected on these growing issues surrounding employee trust and we determined two crucial elements in order to build trust driven strategies: smart leadership and honest employee data. Both depend on one another to work towards building employee engagement, and therefore employee trust. We defined clear guidelines that can help you improve how employees trust their top management personnel.
1. It starts with your leadership approach
Approachable and honest leaders are the most trustworthy and most successful. If you can share your work problems with someone who can help you, not only on how to solve them but how you can grow with them, the more you can trust them. That is the job of a great leader. Someone who can open up to others, reach out to them and help them grow. Being continuously helpful in the workplace is a very important step towards employee trust. You can build that trust through a couple of key points:
- Don’t micromanage: nobody wants someone who controls every task you have to do. Don’t be a “Big Brother” like presence. Giving them the freedom do go about their own way lets them know you trust them.
- Delegate tasks: trusting someone to do a certain task does two important things. First, it empowers someone by giving them that responsibility. Second, it validates your trust in them and it gives them confidence.
- Don’t try to “fix” all the problems: while leaders may feel responsible for solving all the problems they find, look to validate someone else’s ability to solve those problems. Don’t take over their efforts. Instead, look to listen to their struggles and strive to be a helping hand
- Make them share their work problems: maybe most important of all, make them know that it’s okay to be vulnerable sometimes. Everybody has their roadblocks and dilemmas. Let it be clear that sharing those issues is good for everyone involved.
2. Collect and share important data to strengthen relationships
Through trustful data, we make better decisions. It’s not rocket science! Regarding information sources, the more we know about them, the more we trust them. Where does that information come from? Why was that information collected? When we know the answer to those questions we understand the relevance of that data. Again, the more we know, the more we trust. That line of thought is the key to understand how employees will reflect on data collected about them. We believe in a few key principles:
- Make data collecting transparent: It should be no surprise that this step appears here. Transparency is crucial in building trustful relationships. When collecting data about your employees make sure they know why and how they are being analyzed. Also, ask for consent regarding the data collected on them.
- Give them the opportunity to control their own data: when employees have the ability to control the data collected on them they feel more trusted upon. Make them able to see, manage and even delete their own data. They will trust their higher-ups in making decisions regarding their own data.
- Use data to elevate people: giving control over data collecting empowers them to better assess their impact in the workplace. You will be able to get insights that will improve the workflow, and consequently productivity in your company.
- Employ useful tech solutions: adapt tech solutions that can best reflect your workplace dynamics and give you more in-depth insights about your employees. Tap My Back is a team feedback software that focuses on collecting continuous employee feedback data in order to improve engagement in your workplace. It helps you make real-time decisions that will help your team grow.
How can you use all these tips to improve employee trust?
Now that we addressed how important leadership and data are for employee trust, then it’s time to define a clear strategy surrounding them. For our final take, we got several points already discussed upon to give you a trust-based approach on employee engagement. We will address where Tap My Back can help you in building trust relationships with your peers.
As a team manager, give honest feedback through our continuous feedback tools. You can build trustful relationships with your peers and gather important data about them.
Ask feedback about your leadership skills and show your team members that you trust them. Analyze data and share it with your workforce in order for them to better trust its validity.
Check out Tap My Back and how it can help you build stronger and more engaged teams. Talk to us if you have any questions or insights.