As a leader and human being, you understand the importance of clear communication. It is not only an essential skill for success, but for basic survival as well. This is why genuineness and trust are so important.
In the workplace, communication is constant and ongoing: through meetings, phone calls, instant messages, social media, emails and face-to-face. The list goes on. And to add to it, everyone you talk to has a different personality and different communication style. With all this diversity, in order to be effective in your communication strategies you have to understand how to communicate in different ways and in different contexts. With so many avenues for communication available, however, it’s easy to resort to quick and easy but disorganized messaging, which can leave your audience feeling more confused than informed.
The key is to build in genuineness and trust into your relationships first. To be a successful communicator, as well as leader, you can practice a few strategies to improve your own skills and your relationships withteam members.
How To Build Genuineness
Genuineness is one of the TIGERS® six principles, and it is a key element for successful communication. Without it, your team members may question your sincerity and reasoning behind your requests, making them less likely to listen. According to TIGERS Among Us, workplace cultures that value genuineness diminishes the fear of repercussions for being sincere, frank and forthright and encourages respect and clear communication among employees. This furthers understanding and cooperation.
By being genuine, team members are able to build higher levels of communication clarity and mutual understanding, which reduces procedural misunderstandings that leads to conflict. Leaders and employees who practices genuineness are comfortable thinking for themselves and resist pressures to conform to off-target and potentially illegal group activities. They are also reluctant to abandon their own personal values. All of these assets are essential for effective communication and employee work culture fit.
Some behaviors that build genuineness include:
- Respect for self and others.
- Effective problem-solving.
- Effective decision-making.
- Cause and effect thinking.
- Confrontation and feedback skill development.
- Commitment to sharing the truth from your unique perspective.
Employees who are sincere, frank and forthright both at work and home experience greater personal integrity and less stress than those who do not. As a result, they are able to focus their attention and enthusiasm on the success of the company. They have a greater capacity for creativity, commitment and happiness when at work.
How To Build Trust
Trust is having confidence in the integrity, honesty, reliability and fairness of a person, notes TIGERS Among Us. Essentially, your team members will learn to trust you if you do what you say you’re going to do when you say you’re going to do it, and it is observable in the way people treat one another.
When trust is present, harmony, creativity, commitment, and the ability to move forward swiftly are natural outcomes. The absence of trust brings hesitation and slowed processes, which is bad for your team and bad for business. Good communicators are effective because they first build trusting relationships with their team members, which makes their frank, forthright and sincere comments more easy to listen to and respond in positive ways.
Some behaviors that build trust include:
- Doing what you say you are going to do.
- Modeling the behavior you want to see from others.
- Requesting permission to use another person’s resources.
- Refraining from cheating or stealing.
- Striving for predictability and consistency.
- Striving to do the right thing.
- Striving for sustainability.
- Practicing transparency.
- Providing equal opportunity for advantages and consequences.
- Keeping confidences.
Genuineness and trust review
- Demonstrate genuineness with your team members and be consistent with your communication strategies to build trust in the relationship. Your employees will respond more positively if you do.
- Effective communication is essential for the success of any workplace, and good communication starts with genuineness and trust.
- People can tell when others are being inauthentic and insincere, and if they sense that about you, your effectiveness through communication will suffer.
- If you are considered untrustworthy, your communication efforts will likely fall on deaf ears.
Team members don’t want to go above and beyond for insincere leaders who are untrustworthy because they have little stake in the outcome. But when team members trust you and they know that you are genuine, they will be more inclined to listen to what you have to say and buy-into your requests.
Effective communication can be difficult for leaders to achieve, but it is essential for the success of your team.
Genuineness and trust resources
Consider the following resources for more information:
- 3 Things Leaders With Impressive Communication Skills Always Do
- Crampton, Dianne. TIGERS Among Us. Three Creeks Publishing (2010).
- Open Communication Builds Genuineness
Copyright TIGERS Success Series, Inc. by Jennifer Zimmerman
About TIGERS Success Series Group Norm Facilitator Training
TIGERS Success Series provides a Manager Facilitator training with a tool box that engages employees to identify the group norms that improve both department and company work culture. It helps organizations to re-engage employees, resolve conflict behavior and builds work relationships. These same resources and tool box can be used to onboard new employees and contractors onto existing teams so behavior is understood and normalized from the get-go. The training and tool box are brought to you when eight or more of your managers are enrolled.
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