Leadership trust is broken. Employees are expressing skepticism in their leaders’ ability to do what’s right, which can erode the foundation of any organization. To combat this, learn the seven ways leaders can build trust in the workplace.
The good news is that there are seven learnable behaviors that build trust and can be developed so that leaders can overcome the crisis of trust in the workplace. Additionally, there is a “keystone” to each of these seven behaviors. DDI calls them the Key Principles, and leaders use them in every interaction to meet two kinds of needs: the practical need and the personal need. For example, I visit the doctor when I need to get better—we call this the practical need. While I’m at the doctor’s office, I also expect to be treated with dignity and mutual respect—which is what we call the personal need. The Key Principles work to help meet both of these needs. They are as follows:
- Maintain or enhance self-esteem.
- Listen and respond with empathy.
- Ask for help and encourage involvement.
- Share thoughts, feelings, and rationale (to build trust).
- Provide support without removing responsibility (to build ownership).
These Key Principles are the foundation for every effective interaction and are inextricably linked to trust levels, since they all require honesty and sincerity to work.
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