Trust and How to Build It in a Virtual Workplace

Workspace is evolving. In the past, we rely too much on a physical building. We tended to believe that running a business can only be done from a physical office. It does not matter where you have your office, whether a tower, a house or even a condo. Yes, a condo. It is not uncommon to see people who run their business from their condo. We often see people purchasing a condo from Prestige Condo and use the unit as their office.

However, today’s businesses are different. Instead of running a business only from a physical office, there is a better alternative: a vritual workspace. A virtual workplace can greatly reduce business cost. At the very least, you don’t have to rent or purchase a building and pay the maintenance fee. Your business can still run even when your employees are scattered throughout the world. However, building trust among your employees and make them work as a team is completely different than hiring them to work for you. Why should they trust someone they never meet?

Even though it sounds logical for them, you have no time to delay building this trust. Your business will start to crumble if your employees can’t trust each other and work together as a team. The good news is, as long as you apply the following practices, it is not impossible to build trust in a virtual workplace.

Leverage swift trust

When your employees gather for the first time, they tend to trust each other simply because they believe they are in the same boat. This is what we call as swift trust. it may not last forever, but it is a good asset for your business. Over time, the swift trust may decrease among your employees. However, if you can leverage it, this swift trust can last much longer than you expected.
Here is how you can leverage the swift trust:

  1. List every skill of your employee
  2. List the required skills for your business
  3. Based on the skills, make several teams. Each team should have all required skills to achieve a certain goal.
  4. Make sure every member of each team understands their goal clearly.

Build interpersonal trust

Building trust starts when you look for someone to work for your business. When looking at their resume, make sure you scan through their personal details, including hobbies and everything they like. Of course, you will also need their skills and experiences. However, to make sure they can work together as a team, you have to create an environment where the new recruits can enjoy their work. You need to develop an environment where he believes that he will work with other people with the same hobbies and preferences as his. It may sound simple, but it always works.

Communicate well

Communication is all about quality, not quantity. If you want to build trust in your company, you have to make sure they communicate well with each other. Even though they might have problems in the past, they have to move away from those problems and start working together as a team. Look carefully for any potential problem in every team. There might be only 1 or 2 people who account for the lack of communication, but their mistakes  can drastically impact the whole team and make your business suffers.

Share and distribute power

In any business, we no longer apply the single-leader concept. In a virtual workplace, the more you share power and rotate it among your team members, the higher trust you can build among them and towards you. Sharing and rotating the power gives a direct and clear message to your employees that you respect their skills and experience. By doing this, you also show them that everyone has the same chance to become a project leader. The only thing they need to become that leader is competence.