In an era defined by declining trust in institutions (e.g. politicians, banks, government), we seem to be maintaining comparatively strong trust with our leaders at work. The Edelman Trust Barometer found that 75% of people globally trust their employer to do what's right.
Whether or not this trust is misplaced remains to be seen, however the importance of trust between leaders and their employees within organizations cannot be understated. Research has repeatedly found higher levels of trust to promote enhanced job satisfaction, to raise organizational commitment, and to sustain organizational effectiveness and competitiveness. This predicts reduced turnover, enhanced productivity and improved profitability.
Investing in leadership development and training is the best step an organization can take to build trust in leaders and manifest the associated advantages. Leadership development often pays returns which far outweigh the financial resources required - one study estimated a 693% return on investment. It is also increasingly desirable given trends toward more volatile and virtual environments. A leader who is more skilled at generating, utilizing and maintaining social capital is better able to hold employees trust and ensure benefits arising from this trust are kept throughout challenging and changing circumstances.
Psychometric assessments and 360-degree survey platforms are tools which are central to effective leadership development and training programs. Psychometric assessments provide accurate and scientific measurement of the leaders cognitive and behavioral attributes, to test their capabilities and to identify key developmental areas to target during training. They can also be utilized during selection and succession processes to identify future leaders’ adeptness at facilitating trust. 360-degree survey platforms provide a means to gather large scale data from multiple perspectives throughout the organization. This can be used to assess and evaluate performance development outcomes and to gather feedback from co-workers on desired behavioral measures.
Employers enjoy a high degree of trust from the general population in a volatile world characterized by mistrust and skepticism. Let’s ensure this trust is not misplaced and use leadership development tools to materialize the benefits it can bring to businesses worldwide.