Build Quality, Trusting Relationships with Your Team
The current economic slowdown has created an added a layer of stress to workplaces struggling to keep pace with change even before the recession hit. The effect of this stress on our personal and professional relationships is quite evident – the uncertainty of knowing when things will turn around, coupled with additional responsibilities and obligations have often caused us to lose patience with those connected to us. Successful coach-managers recognize the importance of achieving competency in the following skill sets to effectively lead their teams through change:
- Build quality relationships and develop trust
- Communicate effectively through highly developed listening, probing and feedback skills
- Facilitate sustainable behaviour change in self and others
In this first article, I will present the top 5 tips for laying a foundation of trust and building productive relationships with the people you manage. I will discuss the other 2 skills sets in future articles over the next few weeks. Please feel free to respond and share other ideas that have worked for you and your staff.
TOP COACHING TIPS FOR MANAGERS: Build Trusting Relationships.
Benefits to you:Enhanced credibility, confidence and performance.
Benefits to your team: Increased motivation, commitment and loyalty.
- Make a concerted effort to get to know each team member and value them for their unique talents and passions. Embrace diversity in your team and develop strategies to leverage their unique strengths. This requires an initial investment of time but pays big dividends over the long-term.
- Be a good role model – actively engage in personal development to change/improve your own behaviour and attitudes; try to maintain a positive outlook even in the face of adversity.
- Raise your Emotional Intelligence. Have frequent, unstructured conversations with staff to inquire how they are feeling and how you can support them. Demonstrate empathy for team members who are feeling the pressures and stresses associated with the downturn.
- Deliver critical feedback in private. Pick the right time and place and don’t make it about the person. In other words, ‘address’ the problem… don’t ‘dress down’ the person.
- Follow through on your promises and commitments. Do what you say you’ll do and pony up if you drop the ball. They’ll respect you for you honesty.
In summary, managers who act in a caring, considerate and consistent manner are more likely to gain the respect of their team. This lays the foundation for a relationship built on trust and creates confidence in a team member’s ability to deal with adversity.
Written by Rebecca D. Heaslip – President of Leadership Insight Inc.
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