Building Office Accountability Through Trust

by Mark Arnold

Every office setting is a microcosm of humanity. Daily you’ll experience a sampling of people at their high and low points. As human beings, we’re all fallible and subject to the many slings and arrows life randomly zings our way.

What’s the best way to help overcome these down days and get the best out of your co-workers? As it turns out, trust is absolutely key in building a culture of accountability in any office, including yours.

Here are five ways you can help leverage trust as a workplace accountability  building block.

Clearly define duties. Most of the job is specified by job descriptions and responsibilities. Much time, however, is spent helping colleagues and clients. Make sure every staff member knows what their job duties and expectations are. Set benchmarks for measuring progress towards them. No one likes working in the dark.

Set aside adequate time for each task. It is not fair to assign a task and give inadequate time to accomplish it. Be realistic about the time and make sure your team members know the deadlines for every project.

Avoid showing favoritism. It’s impossible to build trust if one person is favored over others. Do your team members believe they are treated fairly? Do some feel excluded from decision-making? When there is no accountability, often one or two people will pick up the slack and take on too many responsibilities. This burns them out and lessens your effectiveness as a team.

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