Trust is a vital ingredient to a great team.

How do you build it?

Jaspar Polak says there are three ingredients:

  • Intimacy. It might sound like a weird word for business, but developing a closeness with teammates improves how we function. Some people believe there is no room for the “personal” in a relationship. But research says that isn’t so.

We ask these questions every year: Does someone care about you? Do you have a friend at work? The more you know about your teammates, the better and smoother you can interact. If you are tight with your teammates, problems get resolved easier. Trusted teammates work together to make sure the best results are achieved. The closeness that comes from learning more about each other helps accomplish that.

  • Reliability. Can you be counted on? Do you understand how your job counts? Do you perform it so your teammates can avoid the hassles that would come if you fell short? What’s your reputation? Frequently disappoints or rock steady?

People worry when you aren’t reliable. They concoct Plan B to cover when you fail. Reliability builds trust.

  • Credibility. When you say you’ll do something, do people count on it? If you make a mistake, do you own it? When you describe a situation or make a statement, does it stand up to the fact check?

It takes multiple occurrences of being found honest, truthful, transparent, and consistent to earn credibility. Trust builds as credibility does.

Consider the trust level on your team right now. How would you describe it?

If your team is average, look at trust. Then model it to your teammates. You will see a performance increase.