The Cost of Distrust
Just recently, this issue of trust has risen to a level of high concern in many organizations. When distrust permeates the organizational culture, the following often-overlooked negatives abound:
- Productivity—goes down as time is wasted on many issues not relevant to performance and results.
- Time—everything slows down as people focus on agendas, motives, and fairness instead of getting things done.
- Cost—with wasted productivity and more time eroded, the cost of work goes up, resulting in lower profitability and growth.
- Unethical choices—without trust, people will make choices to protect and cover themselves—often violating ethical behavior standards.
- Concealing—fearing unfair blame, people conceal their roles and actions, making problem-solving difficult and time-consuming—and success less achievable.
- Spinning—avoiding candor and openness, opinions are hedged and decisions are avoided, eroding confidence and predictability and increasing cycle times for action.
- Escapism—involves missed meetings, elevated absenteeism and even includes voluntary transfer or termination.
- Avoidance—limiting contact with others, limiting shared knowledge, and increasing distrust as people learn little about each other.