Building Trust: the Key to Employee Engagement #HRFL19

Here we are again, still, talking about Employee Engagement. Constantly. The TOP conversation in HR. And why? Because we continue to get it wrong. Any why do we continue to get it wrong? Because we are looking for that One Thing. Just tell us what to do, we seem to be asking the speakers, the writers, but make it quick and easy because we’ve got a lot of “real” work to do.

But here’s the not-so-secret secret: Employee Engagement means work. Ongoing works. There is no one-and-done for employee engagement. Engagement isn’t about foos-ball, after-work drinks or potlucks. All of those come out of the one thing you must do. You need to TRUST your employees and gain their trust.

And this is not easy. You need to take the time to build the trust and get to know your employees. But how can you do that when you really do have your “real” work? So, how can you build trust with your employees in a short amount of time? Jason Treu has an idea!

I was introduced to Jason through #HRFL19 and we found some time to chat more about this topic.

Jason was inspired by the study by Arthur Aron on how to fall in love with anyone. And falling in love starts with vulnerability. In this study, strangers were given 36 questions to ask each other and a short amount of time to answer. By sharing, the participants created mutual vulnerability, which leads to closeness and trust. Jason wondered if this would work in the workplace. This wondering lead to Cards Against Mundanity. This game (which is available via a free download by the way) is a fun way to quickly help your employees, managers and leaders get to know each other and build vulnerability and trust. These questions allow you to get to know each other on a fun level with questions like

  • What superpower would you like to have?
  • What was your favorite summer job?
  • If you ruled the world, what would you change on day 1?
  • If you wrote a book, what would the title be?

I’m excited to learn more about this way to build trust and engagement. Jason is speaking at #HRFL19 on Monday August 26 at 10:15. I’ll be live tweeting from Jason’s session and provide a follow up post as well.

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