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Architects of Trust: Building Trust in the Workplace Ann Brown, MA A&R Brown Business Group Inc. www.bccq.org.

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Presentation on theme: "Architects of Trust: Building Trust in the Workplace Ann Brown, MA A&R Brown Business Group Inc. www.bccq.org."— Presentation transcript:

1 Architects of Trust: Building Trust in the Workplace Ann Brown, MA A&R Brown Business Group Inc.

2 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. Some Survey Numbers 70% of employees believe that trust and loyalty within the firms is declining 60% do not believe that their management is upright, ethical and honest 50% believe that lack of trust is a problem in their workplace (57 organizations surveyed) 70% won’t speak up because they fear repercussions

3 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. One Bottom Line Number 6,500 employees surveyed at 76 Holiday Inn international hotels Correlated with customer satisfaction scores, personnel records and hotel revenues Hotels where managers were perceived to follow through on their promises were more profitable (1/8 th ) improvement in employee trust ratings (5 point scale) should improve hotel profitability by $250,000

4 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. What is Trust? The act of placing yourself in the vulnerable position of relying on others to treat you in a fair, open, and honest way Trust n.& v. 1. (a) a firm belief in the reliability or truth or strength etc. of a person or thing (b) the state of being relied on 2. a confident expectation 3. (a) a thing or person committed to one’s care (b) the resulting obligation or responsibility (OED)

5 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. Where Do We Trust? Social trust - between people Trust in organizations - between organizations and those they serve Intra - organizational trust - within organizations Inter- organizational trust - between organizations

6 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. Some Trust Jargon Relational trust Organizational trust Active trust Passive trust Dispositional trust

7 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. The Importance of Trust “... in low trust groups, interpersonal relationships interfere with and distort perceptions of the problem. Energy and creativity are diverted from finding comprehensive, realistic solutions, and members use the problem as an instrument to minimize their vulnerability. In contrast, in high trust groups there is less socially generated uncertainty and problems are solved more effectively.” Zand, 1972 “Under conditions of high trust, problem solving tends to be creative and productive. Under conditions of low trust, problem solving tends to be degenerative and ineffective.” R. Wayne Boss, 1977 Harvard Business Review,

8 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. Importance of Trust “The most productive people are the most trusting people. If this seems to be an astonishing statement, it shows how distorted the concept of trust has become. Trust is one of the most essential qualities of human relationships. Without it, all human interaction, all commerce, all society would disappear.” Taylor McConnell in Group Leadership for Self Realization “[Trust] creates a reservoir of goodwill that helps preserve the relationship when, as will inevitably happen, one party engages in an act that its partner considers destructive.” Nirmalya Kuma, Harvard Business Review November/December 1996

9 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. The Importance of Trust Productive relationships are based on trust – often unrecognized and taken for granted It’s a resource that increases with use Enables coordination without coercion Enables commitments to be undertaken in situations of high risk

10 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. Reasons for Low Trust Frame of reference - past experiences Feelings - low self esteem, vulnerability Facts - past results (or perception of past results) Perception of attributes of the trustee competence capacity and ability profession intentions (virtue)

11 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. Roots of Low Trust in the Workplace  Lack of inclusion  Feelings of deprivation and loss  Perceptions of vulnerability  No positive attachment to a “boss”  Previous experiences – yours or other peoples

12 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. Trust (or not) in Change All change creates distrust. Trust is often the first casualty of change. Effective communication depends on the capability and willingness of the receiver Concepts of fairness and clear process shapes workable relationships

13 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. Fallout From Change Older forms of hierarchy being replaced New webs or networks may be based on business processes New accountabilities requiring people to work in teams May require new skill sets, attitudes and understanding e.g. initiative, relational competence, time management

14 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. Biggest Trust Buster in Change Organizational change entails a risk of generating real or perceived misalignment between a manager’s words and deeds

15 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. Behavioural Integrity Employees perception of the pattern of word/deed alignment EMPLOYEE TRUST Willingness to promote and implement change Intent to stay with the organization Organizational citizenship behaviour Performance

16 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. Organizational Citizenship How people behave in the organization – norms. Coworker trust and teams Environment for trust affects motivation in groups HIGH TRUST LOW TRUST Group Goals Individual Goals Knowledge sharing versus knowledge hoarding Voluntary Participation – covert/overt resistance

17 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. Characteristics of Trust Builders  Faith in life and hope in the goodness of mankind  A “healing” attitude  Able to self disclose  Able to risk being open and vulnerable  Self acceptance  Self awareness - clear values, boundaries

18 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. Architect of Trust Authenticity Authenticity - finding your voice Emotional Intelligence Emotional Intelligence - tuning into your own emotions and those of others. Climate Building Climate Building - creating an environment where people can bring forth their ideas, values and concerns Walking the Talk Walking the Talk - actions speak louder than words - espoused values v. values in action Taking the responsibility to build trust

19 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. Choosing to Trust feelings What are my feelings Why do I trust? Why do I not trust? WHAT ASSUMPTIONS AND BELIEFS ARE AT THE BASIS OF THIS CHOICE? facts What are the facts

20 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. How do you Trust? I don’t trust anyone until they are shown to be trustworthy I trust everyone until they are shown NOT to be trustworthy 12345

21 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. What Are Your Trust Patterns? People, groups and institutions that I connect with Do I trust/not trust them? Why do I trust/not trust them? What beliefs, assumptions or facts am I basing this on?

22 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. Who Should I Trust? Interests: Does this person share my goals, values and beliefs? Competence: Does this person have the required knowledge and ability.? Accountability: Will this person honor commitments? Reliability: Will this person tell me what I need to know? Attitude: Does this person want me to succeed?

23 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. The Trust Building Equation Trust Intention Preparation Mechanics Self Knowledge Outcomes

24 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. Trust Builders Implementing Change Understand the climate. Understand the level of resilience – future shock Are you stepping on values, norms and traditions? Practice the very best communication – frequently Resistance is normal and healthy – listen Don’t ignore the signs – it won’t go away

25 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. Trust Building Actions COMMUNICATION Solve problems through direct communication.Be explicit. If compromise is productive, do it in communication, not in your mind alone Ask non-assumptive questions. Inquiry not advocacy. Practice deep listening - suspend judgement Look for the positive - acknowledge the intent first Validate success or new effort. Share credit generouslyRESULTS When in doubt about taking on a commitment, air your concerns. Only make promises you can keep. Schedule regular opportunities for input and feedback Be timely Be willing to be wrong

26 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. Hidden Trust Busters Distance Barriers - telephone, , fax - lacks the “high touch” - psychological separation Physical Barriers - the structure of the meeting place Language Barriers - language used may not be the first language of both parties. Cultural Barriers - trust may mean different things and be built in different ways e.g. North America - Demonstrated performance over time China, Latin America, Arab countries - relationships - social interaction over time

27 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. Common Organizational Trust Based Practices Effectiveness and Productivity Improvement and Change Culture and Moral Employee Retention/Turnover

28 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. Communication Advocacy  A western academic & business tradition that stresses testing one viewpoint against the other to find the strongest.  We focus almost exclusively on advocacy  Most managers are trained to be advocates critiquing - adversarial thinking - confrontation - presenting our views and arguing strongly for them - debating forcefully to influence others

29 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. Communication Inquiry  A complementary skill to advocacy that seeks to uncover information about why a particular view is held  Asks questions about underlying assumptions, beliefs, reasoning  Explores why do you believe this ?  Supported by attitude of wanting to understand, explore, learn, expand  Not a technique to cross examine people or find fault

30 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. Appreciative Inquiry Draws on research and studies that show how we get more of what we focus on and looks for the best of what might be. Assumes situations are problems to be overcome Problem, symptoms, causes, solutions, action plan, intervention Breaks things into pieces guaranteeing fragmented responses. Slow, linear change. What to fix. Assumes situations are sources of infinite capacity and imagination Good, better, possibilities Expanded vision of preferred future. Creates new energy fast. What to grow Problem SolvingAppreciative Inquiry

31 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. Communication Listening Group of obstetricians with similar competence and skills Drs. perceived as poor listeners who spent less time or were more abrupt in their interactions had more malpractice suits that those who were perceived as attentive, who took time and who listened. JAMA research

32 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. Communication Deep Listening Level I: Internal Listening at the Word level. Level III: Intuitive Listening at the Essence level Level II: Focused Listening at the Feeling level FOCUS ON ME FOCUS ON YOU

33 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. Results Project Management Keep it simple Traditional good project practices – small time frames, lots of wins Full participation in the planning Clear roles, responsibilities Full understanding of what participation and commitment to plan means

34 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. Big Snakes, Little Ladders Trust builds incrementally Distrust has a catastrophic effect 5 times the effort to rebuild

35 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. Why Is It So Hard to Rebuild Trust? Why is it hard for people to do? Typically involves admissions of guilt, apology, compensation and/or punishment - each of which may have significant costs. Why is it hard to accept from someone? Involves repeating a decision that was proven to be wrong the first time.

36 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. Importance of Trust within Organizations “Although an organization obviously cannot succeed without high levels of trust between members, most aggressive companies do little to actively build trust. The typical corporation spends huge sums of money training its managers in interpersonal skills, but pays lip service to the critical issue of trust.” Marsha Sinetar, Organizational Dynamics, 2001

37 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. Why Not? demands on overstretched managers and executives, skill set that takes us into intimidating territory, requires significant time and energy, and demands risk easier to spend two days learning new project management software, or two weeks adopting a new strategic thinking model than to undertake the complex exploration of building trust and connection with other human beings.

38 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. Maintaining an Environment of Trust Challenges As society and institutions become more complex the attribution of blame and responsibility for failures becomes diffuse. (I see you, I blame you so I don’t trust you) Complex organizations make it hard to deliver consistent service and conduct Need for “quick trust” - being in a hurry to complete the process - pace/workloads Trust in government is a scarce resource

39 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. High Trust Organizations Experience ½ the average turnover of industry peers Higher productivity and profitability More qualified candidates for open positions Higher levels of customer satisfaction and loyalty More adaptive organizational structures Constructive strategic alliances Responsive virtual teams Effective crisis management Reduced transaction and litigation costs

40 A&R Brown Business Group Inc. The People Result Architects of Trust Investment in becoming Architects of Trust, develops an organization full of employees that trust management willing to speak up and challenge the process to improve the way things are, bring commitment, innovation and energy to their work That's competitive advantage


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