10 Surefire Ways to Kill Employee Trust (Without Realizing It…)


Every move you make. Every word you say. They are watching you.


Leaders earn the trust of their employees by acting in ways that show them: “I care about you.” “I’m here for you.” “Follow me. I know the way.”

actions-speak-louder-than-wordsOften, without realizing it, supervisors lose that hard-earned trust by behaving in ways they think employees don’t notice or care about. Here is a list of 10 seemingly small things supervisors do that erodes employee trust.

10 Surefire Ways to Kill Employee Trust

1. Being anywhere but present.
Put your cell phone in a drawer and avoid glancing at incoming email. Give your employee the respect they deserve — your full, undivided attention.

2. Saying one thing, but doing another.
Actions speak louder than words. Don’t think your people won’t notice when you don’t follow through.

3. Talking more than listening
It’s no coincidence that the most effective (and beloved) supervisors are also the best listeners.

4. Asking for input and not acting on it.
When you ask for ideas to improve your business and don’t seriously consider them, it won’t be long before your employees keep those great ideas to themselves.

5. Engaging in toxic talk.
Employees doubt the integrity of supervisors who gossip about others.

6. Too busy to be there.
Some supervisors confuse being overbooked and insanely busy with being effective. Remember that being present and available to help your employees be successful is your main job.

7. Being moody and unpredictable
Employees look for consistency in their leaders. Being over-the-moon happy one day and in the dumps the next, makes employees uneasy.

8. Not walking the talk.
When you do the most expedient thing (instead of the right thing) when dealing with customers or other departments, your employees will follow your lead.

9. Breaking appointments.
Try your best not to cancel or reschedule your regular one-to-one meeting times with your employees. Your people look forward to having quality time with you.

10. Not being a real person.
Employees trust leaders who care enough to get to know them as unique individuals with lives outside the office.

The best way I know to inspire employee trust is to two things consistently:

  • Follow the Golden Rule: Treat others the way you want to be treated.
  • When making decisions do what you believe in your heart (and your gut) is the right thing.

May you be happy.

Barbara Burke
Work hard. Be nice to people.

2016 © Barbara Burke All Rights Reserved.

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May you be happy.

Barbara Burke
Work hard. Be nice to people.

2016 © Barbara Burke All Rights Reserved.