Building Trust in the Workplace


How do you accelerate the level of trust in your organization? The short answer: with lots of reciprocity. People feel trust because they are rewarded in many different forms of currency: customers with excellent service and follow-up communication, employees with recognition for a job well done and interesting opportunities, to name a few. But those behaviors aren’t the whole picture.

The most important currency of trust is access to information. For example, W. L. Gore, the maker of Gore-Tex fabric, provides regular updates to employees on how the company is doing in meeting its goals. Among mid-sized companies, it’s consistently ranked number one of the best companies to work for. Trust means that every employee, starting at the top, knows the organization’s core values, its vision, and the plans for getting there. Trust means that roles and responsibilities are clear, and that the rules for dealing with conflicts are well understood. Trust means holding people accountable for what they do and don’t do. In short, building trust through open communication is the quickest way to build bonds with employees, customers, and shareholders – and to accelerate your organization’s success.

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