Trustworthiness is key for employee loyalty and quality leadership. According to the latest Edelman "Trust Barometer" survey, almost 1 in 3 employees in 28 countries across the world do not trust their employer. This is a sobering fact for many leaders across the U.S., who may wonder whether or not their leadership style evokes trust in their employees.
When breaking down the survey's respondents by company hierarchy, 64 percent of executives, 51 percent of managers, and 48 percent of regular staff members reported trusting their boss, showing that the farther down the job ladder the employee, the lower the level of trust. Many times, employees who do not trust their employer leave the company quickly or do not go above and beyond their job description.
Leaders who are inconsistent, not engaged, or don't listen to their employees will not build up the trust of their staff. Managers don't have to outright lie just to break their employees' trust, all they have to do is make decisions contrary to popular opinion or disregard the feelings of their staff. Leaders who want to gain their employees' loyalty should first evaluate whether or not their activities warrant respect.
Building trust is a two-way street that involves a lot of time and effort on part of a leader. One of the first major steps toward building trustworthiness at your organization is to be transparent about your values and in all communications. When employees feel valued and included, they are less likely to mistrust your organization as a whole.
Furthermore, holding one-on-one sessions with your staff will allow you to speak candidly with your employees and encourage them to do the same. This way, you will open the door for them to address their concerns, inspiring them to trust you and respect your decisions over time.
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