The Cost for Teams That Lack Trust

Building a team based on trust is difficult because in the course of career advancement and education, most successful people learn to be competitive with their peers, and protective of their reputations.  It is a challenge for them to turn those instincts off for the good of the team.

The failure to do this, however, is great.  Teams that lack trust waste inordinate amounts of time and energy managing their behaviors and interactions within the group.  they tend to dread team meetings, and are reluctant to take risks in asking for or offering assistance to others.  As a result, morale on teams lacking trust is usually low, and unwanted turnover is high.

What are the warning signs that trust is an issue in your organization or team?  Teams that lack trust:

  • Have an active, inaccurate grapevine
  • Have high turnover
  • Conceal their weaknesses and mistakes from each other
  • Hesitate to ask for help or offer constructive feedback
  • Hesitate to offer help outside of their job description or area of responsibility
  • Have turf wars
  • Demonstrate defensive behavior and avoid responsibility for mistakes
  • Dread meetings and find reasons to avoid spending time together

Next time you’re in your work group or team, take a look around.  Are there a number of these signs showing up?  What are you willing to do to  bring the team together?