Employee trust is essential to creating a healthy work environment that allows employees to feel safe and secure about the relationships they have with their supervisors, managers, co-workers, etc. without fear of repercussions or reprisals for speaking up or reporting issues.
When employees can trust those around them within the organisation, they are more likely to feel comfortable in approaching them with concerns, problems or other issues. This leads to less stress and tension within the office, which can have positive effects on other areas of business as well.
The state of employee trust in companies across the UK has changed over the past few years and Cezanne HR's UK-based survey has revealed some interesting statistics about trust levels in organisations.
One of the biggest revelations is that 48% of respondents declared that they weren't sure they could trust their HR department to notify them of internal promotion opportunities.
The severity of that lack of trust can be detrimental for businesses; employees would and should be notified about any internal business updates that are ongoing. Not knowing what is happening in a business regarding job positions can be really damaging for morale.
Nevertheless, that’s not the only issue. Here are some key impacts that distrust can have on businesses and how it affects them:
1. Lower Overall Productivity
Employees who do not trust their managers and supervisors will often see their work performance suffer. This is because they are working with a constant stress level of "what am I going to get in trouble for next?" or "is my manager going to notice this mistake and correct me on it?" rather than focusing on getting their work done.
If employees are not able to focus on their tasks at hand, the overall productivity of the company will suffer as a result. Productivity is a by-product of levels of trust being established; in fact, when compared with people at low-trust companies, companies with higher levels of trust reported 50% higher productivity and 13% fewer sick days.
2. Increased Turnover Rates
When employees fear reprisals and feel they have no value within an organisation, they become more likely to look for other opportunities. They may start applying for positions within the company, or they may start looking for jobs elsewhere.
Either way, turnover rates increase when employees do not feel valued by their employers. organisations with less transparency have a 60% increased turnover rate than high-level organisations.
Employees who are focused on external threats rather than internal goals tend to disengage from their work and become less motivated overall. When employees stop caring about their work and their job becomes "just a paycheck," they will not be as engaged and they will lose interest in the work itself.
This only serves to drag down performance even further. With companies that have higher levels of trust, 76% of people stated that they felt more engaged.
4. Decreased Job Satisfaction
When employees do not trust management, they become less likely to feel satisfied with their jobs and more likely to look for something new.
They may not jump ship immediately, but even those who do not seek other opportunities outside of the company will probably become less satisfied with their current position. This leads to lower morale and a more difficult work environment overall.
5. Decreased Company Loyalty
Employees who do not trust their managers often feel that they cannot trust the organisation as a whole. This leads them to be less loyal and more likely to take opportunities outside of the organisation if it ever arises.
They may put in their time but they will also be looking around at their other options..
6. Decrease in Creativity
When employees do not trust their managers or feel valued, they become more likely to keep their heads down and get their work done.
They are less likely to come up with new ideas, experiment with different approaches, or try something that may be outside of the box. As a result, creativity within the company begins to stagnate and the company's overall progress slows or stops altogether.
7. Decreased Company Image
Employees who do not trust their managers are more likely to talk with others about what is going on in their organisation. When employees feel mistreated, they will often tell their friends and family members about their experiences.
If they believe that management does not care about their employees or does not have the company's best interests at heart, they will feel that others should know.
As a result of these negative conversations, the company's image within the community begins to go downhill and new business opportunities become harder to come by.
Lack of trust in the workplace can be detrimental to an organisation. A lack of trustworthy relationships with coworkers may lead to less engagement, lower productivity and a higher turnover rate.The impact of a lack of trust in a workplace can be tremendous and can drag down the entire organisation if left unchecked.
Implementing policies that promote transparency, shared goals, and encouragement from management can help to re-establish trust among employees.