Work Relationships

14 December 2021

4 min.

Trust: an outstanding ally for your development

Trust plays a major role in all our relationships, whether at work, at home or with our circle of friends. Indeed, its presence creates richer and more nourishing relationships, where everyone feels free to be themselves, while its absence distorts relationships and creates distance between people.

Why is trust crucial in a team?

We know that motivation, engagement, and psychological safety in work teams are key to performance. And trust is an essential component of such a work climate.

Team members with a high level of trust are not only more satisfied to work with their colleagues, but are also inspired to collaborate better with them, which in turn has a positive effect on productivity — trustful relationships pay off!

Can you maintain trust remotely?

In a word: yes. And it’s all the more valuable in these circumstances. Whether we work remotely or in hybrid mode, our collaboration patterns change. Sometimes we have to collaborate with colleagues we haven’t even had the chance to see in person!

In this context, building on behaviours that inspire trust is certainly a winning strategy!

What does it mean to be trustworthy?

Promoting trust within a team is a good thing, but how do we know if someone is trustworthy, or if we are trustworthy ourselves?

The trust that a person inspires (or not) is essentially based on the way he or she behaves. And we can group these behaviors under four main pillars on which trust can be anchored.

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Guide: Are you trustworthy?

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Pillar #1: Integrity

Integrity comes from being authentic and walking the talk. While it is sometimes easier to say the right thing, doing the right thing can sometimes be more difficult. Yet it is this demonstration of integrity that shows you are trustworthy.

Pillar #2: Intentions

By acting in a kind way, with clear intentions, we help reduce feelings of insecurity, which also builds trust. Others know where they stand and that’s great!

Pillar #3: Skills

Being able to demonstrate that you know what you are doing certainly inspires trust! And it’s not about knowing everything, it’s about demonstrating your willingness to learn, to improve, and to keep growing.

Pillar #4: Results

When others rely on us, being able to deliver what we promised — in other words, honouring our commitments — demonstrates that we are trustworthy.

And what about trusting yourself?

Trust can be seen as a virtuous circle. When everyone engages in behaviours that promote trust, we trust others more. And others trust us more in return.

But what about trusting yourself — or in other words, self-confidence? You may not be surprised to learn that it has a role to play as well! If we can confidently highlight our accomplishments — first to ourselves, then to others — we contribute to this virtuous circle.

How can we do this? By fighting the feeling of insecurity that hinders trust: where we are afraid of being judged, where we feel it is better to keep a low profile than to be authentic. Showing ourselves as we are, with our areas for improvement, of course, but also and above all with our strengths and unique abilities, allows us to accomplish great things, both individually and as a team!

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Guide: How to confidently emphasize your accomplishments?

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How can trust enhance development?

A trusting team allows its members to go further. Mistakes are accepted as part of the learning process; we allow ourselves to set more ambitious goals because we know that our colleagues respect their commitments; we accept different perspectives because we understand that they are not personal attacks and can be discussed with respect.

Trust is the antidote to being caught in a deadlock. When we’re stuck, our brain is not able to make the best decisions. Indeed, our most primitive defensive reflexes are triggered. When there is trust, rather than staying in a solitary panic mode without knowing what to do, we choose to evolve, together.

Isn’t this the best argument for boosting trust in your team?

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