How to Build Trust


It is the foundation for any group of people who hope to work well together. With trust comes openness and clear communication. When trust is absent we put up walls to protect ourselves…which as you might imagine tends to hinder our teamwork.

Lack of trust causes some of us to put up walls between us and almost everyone around us. Do you know what we call it when individuals are isolated by a set of walls?  Prison.

Trust is required if a group of people hopes to experience joy, effectiveness, and success in what they do. To cultivate trust we must practice humility, patience, and vulnerability…3 things that we as humans are very skilled at. (insert uncomfortable silence).

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 work with a group of people or perhaps lead a group of people 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 vantage point. Listen to their perspective. Hear their concerns. 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 are a launching pad that helps others soar.  The people you lead are not a stepping stone for your success, you are a catalyst for their success.
  3. Believe in them– empower people to get the job done. Give them the keys and allow them to make things happen.  Avoid becoming 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 teammates and leader

  1. Listen to them – consider the idea that God can use others to speak in and give insight for you. God gives those who know us a unique perspective on our lives. 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 limits 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 they have the best of intentions for you and support them as they lead you or work alongside you. Be an advocate for them.  Remember on a team your effectiveness is tied to the people around you, 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.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s