Recently, we dove into the 5 behaviours of a cohesive team.  The first of those five behaviours, trust, is considered to be the most important: without it, a team doesn’t have foundations to build on. 

The journey to a high-functioning team is always evolving, but if you nail trust, you’ll find the rest falls into place. Today, we’re looking at 4 ways you can build trust within your team.

1: Be radically open

You may have heard about Radical Candor, a technique of heightened honesty within teams. When executed in the right way, honesty and openness can have transformational effects on a team.

But remember: leadership starts with you. Learn about Radical Candor, then think specifically about the individuals within your team and consider how they will react. When you’ve sorted that, you can start to be honest, open and a far better communicator.

2: Consider how you communicate

This isn’t just about being able to convey a message that everybody understands. It’s about listening, talking and listening again. Before you make a decision, ask yourself: could one of your team members have some ground-level insight that might help you? And after you’ve issued a new directive, how has everybody responded? Not just openly; look for emotional investment in the new initiative. Being hyper-aware of your team members opens up a new avenue for communication and establishes trust between the two of you.

3: Set your team up to succeed

Everyone wants to be a success at what they do. Even if someone is currently disengaged with their working environment, they don’t wake up every morning and think “I really hope I achieve absolutely nothing today.”

Tap into this need to succeed. By setting clear expectations and owning any mistakes you’ve made, you’ll set the tone for that kind of behaviour throughout your team.

4: Lead the tribe

Loyal members of any tribe have an emotional buy-in with their leader. They are invested in them, and the rest of the tribe, because there’s a source of inspiration at the helm.

Inspire them by showing heart where other team leaders might not. Getting to know them personally, and what they’re like at work and outside of work, will help you establish a common ground with each individual. With that, comes respect, dedication and the first of those 5 behaviours of a cohesive team: trust.

07.01.2012 – His Hand by Jlhopgood licensed under Creative commons 6