MOOC: Building Trust and Commitment on Your Team

“Building Trust and Commitment on Your Team” By Dan Appleman

  • “Be Trustworthy”
    • If you are trustworthy, then you will earn rust.
  • “Tell the truth”
    • You don’t have to tell everything all the time. There are times that it’s illegal to reveal some information, such as insider financial information. This means that if you are able to keep confidentiality, then people will feel you are trust worthy enough to share sensitive information.
    • When to keep confidentiality can get tricky sometimes as sometimes. If someone told you he is going to kill everyone, that is something you definitely want to tell the right authority.
    • Tell the truth doesn’t have to be accurate all the time. At the moment you told the truth, you may believe it’s accurate. It may turn out to be inaccurate later. Sincerity is more important than accuracy. When you found out you are wrong, tell people as soon as possible and apologize. Making the mistake and correct it in a timely manner can make you more trustworthy than not making the mistake in the first place.
  • “Trustworthy people keep their promises”
    • Be clear on what you will do or not do by when, so you are not misunderstood for making a promise that you never made.
    • If you can’t make a promise, then face it and apologize for any harm that it caused and avoid blaming others.
  • “Trustworthy people do not steal credits”
  • “Trustworthy people are predictable”
    • It’s important for people know how you will react. If they know you will not become angry on a bad news, then they are more likely bring you the bad news.
    • To avoid panicking or over-reacting, you can take the time you need, such as 15 min, to prepare your response.
  • Examples of being explicit about your intentions:
    • “If you have a problem, or something is taking a long time, you can bring it to my attention and be confident that I’ll work to help you.”
    • “If you discover a bug, don’t be afraid to bring it to my attention as quickly as possible, I’ll respect you more for it.”
    • “If you see problems or areas of improvement, please bring them to my attention – don’t worry, you won’t get anyone else into trouble – my job is to help you all succeed.”
    • “If you think I made a mistake, please bring it to my attention. When you do, I promise to listen and if necessary apologize and strive to do better.”
  • Trust your team:
    • “Lay out goals and expectations”
    • “Provide training”
    • “Allow them the freedom to do their work”
    • “Be available as a resource”
  • Dealing with confrontations
    • “Acknowledge and compliment their approach. And thank them for their effort”
    • “Bring your approach to their attention. Ask them if they see any flaws in it or any reasons that it’s not better than their own approach.”
  • Strategies to work in an organization with a culture that lack trust
    • “Build a wall between your team members and the rest of the organization”
    • “Acknowledge cultural differences”
    • “Work to spread a culture of trust”
  • Hiring
    • “Describe a time you helped a co-worker”
    • “Describe a time where you asked for and received help with a problem”
    • “Tell us about a time you addressed technical problems with management”
    • “Would you have done things differently today?”
    • “How did you deal with difficult team members?”
  • “Set the example. Be the role model.”
  • Performance review
    • “Part of your review will be how well you take initiative and learn from those mistakes!”
  • Reciprocity strategies for low turnover company
    • “Create opportunities for technical and personal growth”
    • “Mobilize support within the organization”
    • “Support individual commitments”
  • Reciprocity strategies for high turnover company
    • “Prepare for battles – you may need to fight your organization at every step”
    • “Fight for what your team members need”
    • “Never promise what you can’t deliver”

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