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  • Writer's pictureAngiemille Latorre

Building Trust for High-Performing Teams

As a facilitator, I often encounter leaders striving for high-performing teams. However, achieving this goal involves a crucial element that is sometimes overlooked—trust.

Trust is the secret sauce behind successful teams. It's not just a nicety; it is essential. According to a Harvard Business Review article, teams consistently demonstrate that high levels of trust lead to numerous benefits. These include 74% less stress, 106% more energy at work, 50% higher productivity, 13% fewer sick days, 76% more engagement, 29% more satisfaction with their lives, and 40% less burnout.

In essence, trust acts as a catalyst for tangible results.

How can you build trust?

Now, let's delve into the nitty-gritty of building trust. It's a bit like chasing "world peace"—everyone desires it, but for leaders intentionally cultivating it within their teams, it can be complex.

A Practical Approach:

A practical suggestion for addressing trust issues is incorporating trust into a team's "Ways of Working" discussion. This activity brings the team together to identify the behaviors that are essential for fostering effective collaboration and creating an environment of openness, respect, and trust.

Key Areas to address in a “Ways of Working” discussion:

How will team collaboration be structured?

Clearly define roles and responsibilities. For instance, appoint a team lead responsible for project timelines and a point person for client communication.

What communication methods will we employ?

Establish communication rituals, like daily check-ins or weekly status updates. Decide on channels—email, project management tools, or regular team meetings.

How do we manage feedback, ongoing learning, and celebrate achievements?

This is vital for team engagement and development. Create a system for regular feedback, perhaps through monthly check-ins. Celebrate milestones—big or small—to foster a positive team culture.

How will we navigate differences?

Discuss work styles; for example, some team members might prefer detailed written instructions, while others thrive on verbal communication. Acknowledge and accommodate these differences.

Lastly, how will we address conflicts?

Establish clear guidelines to prevent issues from escalating and safeguard team morale. For instance, designating a neutral mediator and encouraging open communication can be effective conflict resolution strategies.

Check out our canvas!

Ensure you cover all bases and establish clear expectations with our canvas tool. It's designed to guide your "Ways of Working" discussion, breaking down key areas like collaboration and communication into actionable components. Print it out and fill it in together as a team for a successful conversation.

🎯 Summary & Next Steps

In summary, effective communication is vital for achieving the best team performance on any project. Don't delay—initiate a conversation early on to reach agreements on how the team will collaborate. This lays the foundation for a trustful team environment for successful project execution.

🛎️ Consider an Outside Facilitator

Building trust internally can be challenging. If you find yourself hitting roadblocks, let’s talk! We’ve helped many teams overcome challenges with our guided “Ways of Working” sessions.


We wish you an incredible journey forward, and remember, we're here to assist if you need help getting unstuck. 😉 🚀


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