This headline about the lack of trust for senior managers was published today as the result of a survey held by the Chartered Institute Of Personnel and Development. This quarterly survey of employee attitudes, explores the fast-changing world of work and emerging challenges for individuals, employers and policy-makers. It’s based on a representative sample of more than 2,000 people in employment in the UK.
Employees’ attitudes to senior managers should ring the most alarm bells for employers. Only about a third of employees say they trust or have confidence in their senior managers and just a quarter agree their organisation’s directors consult them about important decisions. Employees’ negative perceptions of consultation is an issue that has got worse over the four quarterly surveys and is likely to be one of the reasons for the lack of trust and confidence among staff in their leaders. This begs the question – Why should I follow you? Sure I may need to do what you say due to your position but as far as committing myself fully and putting my heart and soul into it – why should I – and what would make me more likely to follow you?
The US Professional Service Firms guru David Maister cites a series of unspoken tests people subject you to before deciding whether to follow you or not. Whilst he describes a specific type of culture, the fee generating partnership, I’ve found that leaders in many industries can relate to these tests and there relevance more generally. The tests are about your motives, your values, your competence and your behaviours. Click on the link below to listen to David – and consider what this means for you – right now, and as you build your reputation in the future.