Advertisment

Advertisment

Home » Knowledge Hub » » Trust in the work

Trust in the work

04 December 2023

Paul Devoy

Story by
Paul Devoy CEO, Investors in People

Hands of man people fist bump team teamwork and partnership business success, Black and white image

Paul Devoy, CEO, Investors in People reflects on his own company culture and how trust can help support employees in their best ways of working.

The term organisational culture has transformed from something perceived as a “fluffy” and poorly understood issue to being something that CEO’s regard as the key to maximising performance. Equally, when the latest corporate scandal hits the press, the root cause can often be traced back to something being fundamentally wrong with the culture.

In my view one of the most important aspects of culture is trust. There is an old Dutch saying attributed to Johan Thorbecke who was an influential Dutch politician from the 19th century – “Trust arrives on foot and leaves on horseback”. I believe the fundamental building blocks of an organisation, and any relationship for that matter, centres greatly around trust. This is equally as important for employers and employees, no matter how or where they work.

I have sought to reverse the Thorbecke approach. Trust is assumed and not earned for Investors in People employees. We measure people based on outcomes/outputs and not inputs. If you do your best work at 4am on a Sunday morning, then that’s fine. We have two simple heuristics or rules of thumb to manage that approach.  How an employee organises their time cannot: –

  1. Be to the detriment of the excellence we expect in our customer service.
  2. Negatively impact upon how a colleague delivers on their objectives.

Other than that, our people can decide when they are going to be at their most productive to work. It’s not an easy option either as everyone has stretching objectives to achieve. The feedback from our people is that they appreciate working for an organisation where they are trusted and treated like adults.

The power of trust

When employees feel trusted and have confidence that they can go about their day-to-day job free from scrutiny and questioning, in our experience they are able to produce the best results, in return contributing to a positive workplace environment.

I think too many of our HR policies are based on the outliers. Most of the employees are covered by policies that are designed to deal with the small minority of people who can’t be trusted. I don’t think that creates a positive culture.

Instead, I would recommend a culture of radical trust where it’s assumed that the vast majority of people can be given the autonomy to balance their own needs with that of the organisation. Have simple heuristics to set the parameters and measure people on stretching outputs and outcomes.

It’s working for us as all our performance metrics has significantly improved since we implemented this approach. Despite being a fully remote organisation post-pandemic, our senior leadership team and myself as CEO have still ensured that the highest levels of trust in our workforce are upheld and one of the biggest ways of doing this, is by sharing our organisations visions and successes with the rest of the team.

I have also started to implement and research into OKR’s (objectives and key results), which are a goal setting methodology that help teams set measurable goals for themselves. Whilst the majority of organisations set ‘goals’ these aren’t always communicated properly and by communicating thoroughly, a ‘we’re all in this together’ bond is created throughout.

Creating and sustaining a strong company culture through trust, can also be maintained by following through with commitments and promises and being respectful of boundaries, viewpoints, and other opinions.

Investors in People recently hosted the first of two growth planning sessions, which brought over 30 members of our team together under one roof. Giving them a voice and a platform to express their views on how the organisation can grow internally and for its community, it was evident to see how open communication and collaboration between every employee and every team in the organisation is bringing out the best results.

As a business leader, to know that I can trust and fully connect with my team is incredibly empowering. At our organisation, from the marketing manager to the events lead, the apprentice, and the account managers, we all collaboratively come together to ‘Make Work Better’ in order to serve our community, and as an organisation that works to provide the very best accreditations in people management with trust as one of its core values, we will continue to practice what we preach internally and externally.

Topics

Share

Advertisment

Latest Events

It’s All HR’s Fault

Despite being a trusted voice in the C-suite, HR is still viewed with distrust and outright disdain by many employees – the very people HR is there to support.
It's all HRs Fault Webinar

Jan 24 – Health and Wellbeing – Making it Personal

If you’re investing in a health and wellbeing strategy, you want to make sure it meets the needs of your workforce.

Jun 2023: HR Data – The Key To Delivering Real Value

This webinar on HR Data brought home the importance of understanding the value of people data not just to HR but to the business as a whole.
HR on demand event - HR data: the key to delivering real value

Apr 2023 – HR Tech: Ensuring your technology delivers for all your people

Technology continues to throw challenges at the HR function as the speed of change increases and new technology (anyone noticed something called AI?) enters the arena.
HR tech on demand webinar with Sympa

Nov 2023 – Reward and Recognition for the International Workforce

In this webinar we explored the dispersed workplace and asked what it means to support employees all over the world.
Reward and Recognition for the International Workforce

Dec 2023 – Year in Review 2023

In this webinar we brought back some of our previous 2023 webinar speakers who gave their view on the past 12 months.

AI as part of the hiring, on-boarding and retention processes

The HR World and Sanderson Managed Services Ltd held an exclusive Round Table dinner to further the discussion of AI among Senior HR Leaders.

RPO Market – Insource, Outsource or Hybrid: What are the best solutions?

The HR World and Sanderson Managed Services Ltd held an exclusive Round Table dinner to explore and debate the current RPO arena.

Resourcing Models, Insource, Outsource or Hybrid what are the best solutions?

Discussions on the evening were led by two invited experts Jim Richardson, with spells at Santander and Royal Bank of Scotland as Global Head of Talent, Jim now advises corporate businesses on their TA models, and, Ross Crook, Managing Director at Sanderson Solutions.
Resourcing models round table

Mar 2023 – Equality, diversity, and inclusion: Reshaping thinking for action

In this webinar we explored how ED&I can have a real impact for businesses. At the centre of the discussion was the idea of changing thinking in order to make things happen.
Equality, diversity, and inclusion: Reshaping thinking for action

Feb 2023 – Leading With Agility: How to give your business the behaviours and mindsets it needs for volatile times

This webinar took as its focus agility and how businesses can develop and maintain these skills among its workforce.
This webinar took as its focus agility and how businesses can develop and maintain these skills among its workforce.

Jan 2023 – How can you create a culture of health and wellbeing in the workplace?

This webinar tackled the important and timely issue of creating a health and wellbeing culture in the workplace.
How can you create a culture of health and wellbeing in the workplace?

AI and Technology: A Swift Return on Investment

As technology becomes more sophisticated, tailored and impressive, HR has a considerable task on its hands to understand what solution or system is best for its business.

Sep 2023 – Retention: Holding on to The Talent You Need

The post-pandemic workforce now presents more of a challenge in terms of feeling satisfied and content in the workplace. This webinar on retention also provided a masterclass on employee engagement.
Retention holding on to the talent you need

Oct 2023 – Talent Acquisition: Why your Employee Value Proposition (EVP) is more important than ever

This webinar addressing talent acquisition majored on the Employee Value Proposition (EVP).
Talent Acquisition – Why your Employee Value Proposition (EVP) is more important than ever

Compensation Planning – The key to a motivated and satisfied workforce

Compensation and reward strategies have changed radically over the past few years with the impact of the pandemic and the trends that followed.
Compensation Planning - The key to a motivated and satisfied workforce

Streamlining Year-End HR Operations

Providing seasonal support, ideas and inspiration, this webinar covered the challenges and opportunities presented to HR professionals at this time of year.
Streamlining year-end HR operations

Aug 2023 – Professional Development: Making the Step Up

What does it take to be an HR Director, or to take a position at Board level? This webinar looked at professional development for HR leaders.
What does it take to be an HR Director?

Jul 2023 – Employee Benefits: Then, now and next

The importance and value of giving employees choice on rewards and recognition.
Employee benefits, then now and next.

May 2023 – AI in HR: The Perfect Balance

AI is hitting the headlines right now as experts forecast a future that’s powered by tech. But what will this mean for HR?
On demand hr webinar - Ai in HR

Hiring Gen Z – what can employers learn about emerging talent in 2023?

Join us at this cross-learning, in-person event as part of The HR World Culture Clash series at RSA House in London on 20 Oct 2022.
Hiring Gen Z: Culture Clash Panellists

Bridging the gap: what can employers learn about emerging talent to drive better hiring strategies?

Join us at this cross-learning, in-person event as part of The HR World Culture Clash series, bringing HRDs, founders and emerging talent together to build a better workforce for the future.
Bridging the gap: what can employers learn about emerging talent to drive better hiring strategies?
HRW Membership@2x@2x

Are you a senior HR professional?

Join our membership to shape the future of work, get exclusive access to events, white papers and research content, profile your work, gain access to support from HR experts and celebrate your successes.

Become a Partner

Please get in touch to talk about how we can help your business make an impact in the world of work through our content marketing, partnership plans and advertising.