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How Leaders Build Trust

Updated: Mar 6, 2023

Trust is a foundational societal pillar permeating every aspect of our lives - especially in the workplace.

Trust is a foundational societal pillar permeating every aspect of our lives. From trusting a person for love in marriage, to politicians to represent our interests, to businesses to provide us with goods, we place our trust in the hands of others every day. However, trust is rarely given freely. It is one of the utmost forms of capital available. For companies to become successful long-term, they must earn the trust not only of their customers and investors but also of their team members. Leadership trust is critical to creating a high-performing business. Today, we share the importance of leadership trust, what employee behaviors it fosters, and how you can build your skills in leadership.

The Importance of Leadership Trust

Research shows that trust and integrity are among an organization's most powerful leadership traits. When leadership trust isn’t instilled into an organization, employees often get dragged down by negative office culture or politics. In turn, they feel insecure in their environment or job status, they feel less invested in their work, and they are more likely to sabotage or keep innovative ideas quietly to themselves rather than collaborate with others. These situations dramatically slow business development and can create high-stress environments. However, when employees trust in their leaders, everyone receives the following benefits.

Leadership Trust & Employee Behaviors

Greater Innovation

When employees distrust their leaders or each other, they are less likely to speak up about improving processes or new ideas. However, when leadership trust is established in an organization, employees feel safe and confident in their environment to take risks, communicate freely, and innovate new ideas. A perfect example is when you see that shy employee emerge from their shell to reveal a quirky sense of humor and a well of creative ideas that drives unique perspectives on projects.

Higher Efficiency & Teamwork

When employees distrust their company, they are often seen peeking up from their workspaces or getting distracted by toxic situations. Leadership trust leads to tasks getting accomplished at a higher rate of efficiency. Not only are employees more willing to share resources and ideas, but they communicate better and trust in one another to complete tasks. Plus, negative distractions are minimized. A trusted space equates to creating a streamlined environment for productivity.

Minimized Stress & Fear

When employees lack trust in their leadership to look out for their best interests or have an open line of honest communication, it can leave them perpetually on edge. Leadership trust mitigates that stress and fear. This allows employees to adapt effectively when business structures or projects change, knowing that their company will do right by them and inform them appropriately.

Improved Company Culture

A company lacking in trust culture can breed extensive issues of racism, sexism, ageism, and a variety of other narrow-minded attributes that prove to be toxic to team members, and to the bottom line. Leadership trust plays heavily into company culture. Employees rely on their leaders to make ethical decisions, resolve conflicts, and treat everyone fairly. Through greater leadership trust, company culture will vastly improve. This, in turn, can lead to higher retention rates, increased talent acquisition, and diverse thinking and innovation.

Unlike building trust among friends, family, or a loved one, building leadership trust in a business takes training to gain the proper awareness and skills to become the leader your company needs you to be. Leadership development courses can jumpstart or advance your knowledge and skill sets, giving you a competitive and desirable edge.

Become a Trusted Leader with Workplace Peace Institute

With our Leading with Trust & Integrity course, participants learn practical strategies, informed by research, that leaders can utilize to inspire and repair trust with integrity and produce tangible results. This streamlined 6-hour course consists of six modules designed to be completed at your own pace. To start your journey to earn leadership trust, enroll in our course today.


Workplace Peace Institute is an organization systems design and research firm that is singularly focused on creating workplace cultures where people thrive. Workplace Peace Institute supports small to mid-sized businesses in optimizing employee engagement, maximizing organizational productivity, and improving profitability by infusing human security and dignity as foundational attributes of their business model. Our Leadership Academy supports leaders in honoring basic human needs and dignity needs in the workplace, so they can actualize human potential in the workplace. The online Leadership Academy optimizes competencies in human behavior, communication skills, conflict resolution, and Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging to create highly engaged workplaces where basic human needs and dignity are consistently honored. All our courses are offered online and can be customized for in-person workshops and seminars.


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