09 October 2017

Trust

Welcome back! I missed you.

I had to take a short break from blogging. I got a little overwhelmed with too many things and blogging fell to the wayside.

So I've been thinking about trust for a couple days now and its role in the team room and in collaborations in general. I'm not going to role out a bunch of quips about trust here, I want to talk about it's value though.

Without trust in a team there can be some serious consequences. A simple consequence is that when team members don't trust each other they can burn a lot of energy second guessing each others work. Related to that, individuals can burn a lot of energy speculating about what their team mates are doing.

Thats a lot of wasted energy.

So how do you develop trust in a team? I think there are a lot of ways, and I won't claim to know them all. My usual reply is 'drinking!'. But more seriously, it is important to develop a human connection between team members. That can be as easy as asking how someone is doing, what they did over the weekend, or if they need some help. Just being a human being is necessary, and will eventually lead to trust.

There is another critical component to developing trust. You have to listen to each other. When I say listen, I don't mean wait for the other person to stop talking, that's being polite, I mean actually hear and process what they have said. 

We don't have to agree all the time, and we don't have to have groupthink, but if we aren't even allowing alternate opinions to be voiced, in addition to showing a lack of respect, we are fostering a lack of trust. Consider the view point of the speaker; when you ignore or shutdown their words you are telling them you don't care about what they have to say -- you are telling them you don't trust them. Now ask, why should they trust you?