Building Trust

I just read another survey showing that many employees do not trust their bosses. Numerous studies show that trust in their immediate supervisor is one of the mostimportant elements of job satisfaction for employees. However, this remains an elusive goal for many organizations.

Trust is the foundation for teamwork, and the challenge for many companies is creating an organizational culture of teamwork. If you are working on teamwork without addressing the trust issue, you are missing the boat.

If you are a boss ask yourself a few questions:

• Do your direct reports trust you?
• Do their direct reports trust them?
• How do you know?
• Do you cross your fingers hoping that organizational members trust each other?

Let’s see if a “5 Why” problem analysis can be of value:

1. Why isn’t our organizational performance where we want it to be?
Answer: We suffer from a lack of teamwork

2. Why don’t we have better teamwork?
Answer: Though not spoken, we believe there is a lack of trust

3. Why is there a lack of trust?
Answer: One reason is that employees don’t feel like we care about their personal well-being

4. Why don’t employees feel like management cares about their well-being?
Answer: Trust and empowerment are not viewed as organizational values

5. Why aren’t trust and empowerment viewed as values?
Answer: Because management confuses the organization with statements and actions like:

  • Our people are our most valuable resource but do nothing to demonstrate their commitment
  • Lean tools are used as a weapon
  • Lean is only for workers and staff – not management

Improving performance

  • You cannot have a high-performing organization without teamwork and trust
  • Lean thinking and tools are a great enabler – - if implemented properly
    • It’s more about how and why than what you do
  • It’s all about keeping things simple and treating adult learners with respect

If you want an organizational culture of teamwork and continuous improvement, you need to have respect for people as a foundation.  When that value is driven by senior leaders as part of their daily business, you are taking the first steps in a very long journey to building trust – and a sustainable organization.

Sustainable Lean can help….

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