Trust is the most basic and foundational element for any group of people who hope to work together. (Click to tweet)  When people experience a lack of trust they put up walls to protect themselves, which as you might imagine tends to hinder the teamwork process.  Do you know what it is called when a series of individuals remain isolated by a set of walls?  Prison.

Trust is required if a team hopes to experience some level of effectiveness and success.  Experiencing trust requires us to practice humility, patience and vulnerability (click to tweet)…3 things that we as humans are so skilled in (insert uncomfortable silent consideration).

Trust is like a highway.  It runs 2 directions, and both directions need to be open and clear for things to work well.  If you are on some sort of team or perhaps lead a team I want to encourage you to do everything you can to build a foundation of trust.  It is a launching point for whatever you hope to accomplish.  Because trust is like a highway, let’s consider how we keep both sides of the road moving forward:

How to Build Trust with people you lead

  1. Listen to them – the people you lead likely see things you are unable to see from your leadership role. Listen to their perspective, concerns and figure out how to see and appreciate what they see.
  2. Care more about their promotion than your position – leverage your position as a way to lift those around you. You should be a launching pad that helps others soar.  They are not a stepping stone for your success.
  3. Believe in them – empower people to run fast and achieve. Give them keys and allow them to make things happen.  Do not become a limiting factor in the lives of the people you lead.
  4. Stay committed to the vision – Keep the team running in one clear direction. Beware of the desire or pull to come up with new plans, new directions and new paradigms every few months.  Allow people to gain momentum moving in one direction.

How to Build Trust with your leader

  1. Listen to them – consider the idea that God can use them to speak in and give insight for you. God gives leaders a unique perspective.  Consider the idea that they might see things you do not yet see.
  2. Care more about the team than your promotion – nothing frustrates a leader and hurts teamwork more than self-promotion. Individuals who care more about their stat sheet than the team scoreboard tend to kill trust on a team.
  3. Support them – assume your leader has the best of intentions for you and support them as they lead. Be an advocate for them.  If they are the leader than your effectiveness is tied to them, so support them in whatever way you can.
  4. Focus on the vision – do not get distracted or caught up by things that are superfluous. Keep your attention on the main thing, whatever that is for your team.