False sense of trust – are your employees honest?
Many of our clients thrive for a conflict-free workplace, especially if their company started as a friendship, or family driven business. They might wonder: “What would be wrong with maintaining a work environment where confrontation is rare, and stress is seemingly nonexistent?”
When looking at teams, we often see people speaking differently on the office corridors vs. in the meeting room: “They have been doing this wrong for 3 years, but I am not going to be the one who tells them, not my department”.
While we all dream of our workplace to be a happy family, lack of disagreements and disputes may in fact indicate deeper issues. For example, we see colleagues are not willing to speak up for their opinion, they do not take the risk of standing up for what they believe in or what their expertise dictates.
As a result, these “silent team members” are only taking half-hearted responsibility for the decisions made and they might start showing less proactivity, less initiative to bring the team to better results. On top, the team might not make the best decisions, lacking input from various expertise around the team.
In summary a lot of „silent agreement” may indicate
– Lack of trust
– Lack of responsibility
– Lack of proactive behavior
Where do these lead to? A fake reality. This can cause employees
– not sharing their issues
– not feeling comfortable giving feedback
– being only concerned about personal goals, not company goals.
The key intervention in such situation is to systematically build real trust. How?
Here are some actionable tips for you, as a leader:
– “Walk the talk”: do what you say and say what you do.
– Share your intentions about the business, about people in the organization regularly.
– Proactively share the mistakes you made and admit your imperfection.