Your employees are often at the frontlines when something goes wrong. Therefore, it’s important to encourage trust and open communication.
“Frontline employees have extremely valuable insights on customer experience, consumer preferences, and have a lot of great ideas to share with the team.” – Nudge Rewards
However, demanding you be cc’d on everything is not the way to go about building trust. So, here’s how to let go of the need to micromanage, and show employees you believe in their ability to get the job done.
Remember, Trust Goes Both Ways
You have to give trust in order to receive it.
“As Ernest Hemingway said, ‘The best way to find out if you can trust somebody is to trust them.’ If you want your employees to trust you, try trusting them first.” – Forbes
It’s simple. You have to show your staff what trust and transparency look like. Model the type of behavior you would like to see from your employees and always celebrate their courage to speak up.
Encourage Safe, Open & Honest Communication
A major way you can show employees trust is by encouraging transparency. When communication is open, honest, and free-flowing, staff feel safe to voice their opinions and share any possible misgivings.
“A common behavior when presented with a challenge is to let your emotions drive the situation. We all have a fight-or-flight reaction when we feel unsafe. “ – Business.com
However, this type of reaction is not conducive to open communication. If employees are fearful they will be chewed out publicly for every mistake, they will be less likely to bring issues up as they arise.
Rather than react as soon as you hear something you don’t like, take a moment before you respond. This will encourage more sharing in the future since staff won’t be fearful of your reaction.
Treat Mistakes As Learning Opportunities
Employees need to know they can come to you after the inevitable mess-up. They also need to be confident that you will support them in coming up with solutions.
“When you make mistakes, make a point of teaching others what you’ve learned. Doing so builds connection and trust. The best leaders are great teachers, coaches, and guides who show us the way after they have been down that path.” – Inc.com
Before we make the right decisions, we often have to make the wrong ones. Treating mistakes as learning opportunities is another great way to earn your team’s trust.
In this Forbes article, 10 CEOs offer their best advice for turning mistakes into learning opportunities – check it out!
Do Regular Check-Ins
Regular check-ins are an important part of good management. However, don’t feel the need to engage with employees every step of the way. Rather, have them report to you at the end of each quarter or after important project milestones.
This way, you can make sure your team is on track without insisting you be notified of every little move. This balanced approach to giving your staff autonomy will help steer your team while still showing them you trust their discretion.
Listen Effectively & Respond Constructively
After asking employees for their input, it’s important to listen and respond in a constructive manner.
“Managers establish trust by asking effective questions, then by actually listening to employees’ answers. The technique of ‘drilling’ down with questions can take a surface-level conversation to a meaningful dialogue.” – Forbes
The key to building trust is to give your employees everything they need in order to feel supported. Trust is not automatic and it should be earned. However, once you and your staff get to a place where you know you can trust one another, it’s time to let go.
With these tips in mind, you’ll be well on your way to creating a culture of mutual support and accountability!
If you have questions or would like more information, we’d be happy to help. Please send an email, and our team will get in touch with you!