Earlier this year, the American Psychological Association released its much-anticipated 2014 Work and Well-Being Survey – a study that revealed a startling absence of trust in today’s employer-employee relationships. “This lack of trust should serve as a wake-up call for employers,” warned David W. Ballard, PsyD, MBA, head of APA’s Center for Organizational Excellence. “Trust plays an important role in the workplace and affects employees’ well-being and job performance.”
The APA’s survey cites a number of culprits for the lack of trust in today’s professional relationships, one of the most significant being that only half of U.S. workers believe their bosses are “open and upfront” with them. In fact, the study cites “effective communication” as one of the top three skills leaders should develop to build trust with their employees.
In his book “Overcoming Fake Talk: How to Hold REAL Conversations that Create Respect, Build Relationships, and Get Results,” nationally recognized business communication expert John Stoker offers a solution to the APA’s “call to arms” for greater trust in today’s workplaces. “We’re suffering from an epidemic of what I call ‘counterfeit conversation,’ or ‘fake talk,'” says Stoker. “This is an approach to communication that undermines our ability to have trusting relationships at work because we fail to talk openly and effectively about what matters most.”
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