Building a relationship with your employees that is trust-based is always â€¦ always easier said than done. There are a number of reasons why this is the case, but the most obvious one is that employees often feel like their employers are looking at them as though they are disposable parts that can and will be thrown away when they are used up. The most successful businesses understand they may not have done anything to give their employees that feeling and might even be working to offset that lack of trust, but it can be hard to fight the stigma.
This doesn't mean you should give up trying, it simply means there are a couple of different ways you should go about making sure you have the right people and when you have them, take steps to get them to trust you.
The Moneyball of Human Resources
Many a sports fan has heard of the book and movie that is titled "Moneyball." The story is based on a real approach taken by Billy Beane and the Oakland Athletics in building their roster. Instead of leaning on a scout's "gut" feeling, the front office started looking at very specific statistics. These statistics weren't built entirely on just how good the individual player was performing but more on how he would mesh with the rest of the team and produce when put together with players that had a specialization in other areas.
That approach is starting to take off in other markets, and the business world is embracing the approach. Called "People Analytics" in the business world, this approach has changed and grown and has certainly gotten more high tech. The bottom line is this approach is used by HR departments that are trying to do more than hire the best interview or the best resume. Tests have even been developed that are built to show whether a certain employee will fit in the team.
Showing Trust in Your Team
Once you have put together a team using people analytics you still need to take the necessary steps to show them they are more than pieces that can be changed out whenever you grow tired of them. The best way to go about doing this is show actual trust in your employees.
This is more than simply allowing them to have unfettered access to their favorite websites or to their personal email addresses and social media sites. Showing trust means giving them tools that make them feel as though they are a part of the team, and that you believe in them enough that they can operate independently of you from one day to the next. Having to report in, or explain every move an employee makes while working on a project is only going to have the opposite effect of showing your appreciate what they're doing for your business.
1. Collaboration: Allowing your employees access to collaboration tools that help them work with their coworkers without constantly coming into the office and updating some sort of white board will show them you understand their job. There are plenty of tools out there, including applications like Evernote Business and even Google Apps that will make it easy at a low cost to grant access to whoever you feel deserves it. Once they've gotten access and understand the process, allow them to run free until they proclaim the project complete.
2.Incentive Programs: Another way to make sure employees don't feel as though they are simply interchangeable pieces is through incentive and reward programs that pay out at regular intervals. There are some companies such as InteliSpend that are equipped for helping businesses carry out an incentive or reward program by issuing prepaid cards.
These incentive programs can be simple reward gift cards, or something that is geared towards getting someone to sign up for a wellness program. Whether talking about incentives for projects completed or just meeting safety or health goals, incentive programs can make employees and clients feel as though they are invaluable members of the company instead of just cogs in the wheel.