- How do I restore or improve trust in my team?
- Trust happens on purpose within a team. Lost trust is often an inept organizational system that creates paranoia and fear.
That doesn’t answer your question, and we rarely have the authority (or desire) to change how the company runs.
When trust is lost, it must have been there at some point, even a little bit. The people on the team know what that trust looked like; they need to be reminded of what they did to create that trust.
10 Questions to Restore Trust on a Team
- Ask the team to define TRUST in their words. It may be useful to have 3 or 4 definitions if the team gets stuck.
- Ask the team to come up with 2 to 3 REAL examples of when this trust they defined has happened within the team or workplace.
- Draw on whiteboard Non-existent Trust = 0 – 1- 2- 3- 4- 5 – 6 – 7 – 8 – 9 – 10 = World Class Trust
- Ask each person to determine where the team and they are on that scale. They don’t share what level they chose; it is subjective.
- Ask each person to take 3 – 8 minutes and list what is working that is keeping them where they placed their trust number on that scale. Asking for ‘What is working to keep you at the number/ level you chose? ‘
- Ask people to share what is working, keeping them where they are – flip chart the responses.
- Ask them where they would have to be on this same scale to say that enough progress has happened or that trust is good enough? Again they don’t share their level out loud; it is subjective.
- Ask each person to take 3 – 8 minutes and list ‘What would be happening? Share CLEAR and DISTINCT examples of how they would see this higher level of trust happening?’ Keep driving them into specifics; you are looking for tangible items that you could see and quickly recognize when “Trust is higher.”
- They share what they wrote; you capture the examples.
- With all that, you ask them to get into groups of 3 or 4, and based upon what has happened and what they know, what is the team’s next step to improve trust?
You just led the team to a discussion of what trust is, how they have seen trust happen, and what a higher level of trust would look like – that is awesome!
With the ideas that the team created in step 10, you work with them to develop short-term action plans and gain access to the resources they need to increase the team’s trust. Then you create a follow-up plan with the team and evaluate what worked and the next small steps to improve team confidence.