A recent study by The Conference Board revealed that 51 percent of US employees feel satisfied with their job. While that number has been on the climb for the past seven years, it certainly leaves room for improvement.

The same report provides 23 categories that survey respondents weighed in on. The results give a glimpse into why 49 percent of employees don’t feel satisfied with their chosen careers or jobs. Many of the categories have a direct impact on whether your employees trust you and your company or not.

Since trust is an emotional response, it bears a mention that perception is as much to blame as reality – even more so in some cases. Building trust could be simply a matter of explanation or transparency and not truly a flaw in company policy.

Promotion Policytrust

The segment where employees were least satisfied is with ‘promotion policy’. That can mean different things to respondents such as being skipped over or not considered for a promotion, or they might disagree with hiring from outside instead of within the ranks.

To build trust through your promotion policy doesn’t require a change necessarily. Clearly explaining to each employee where their role can take them next and how to achieve a promotion typically will suffice.

Performance Review Process

A Gallup review details a major shortcoming: only 38 percent of employees don’t know what’s expected of them. Regularly-scheduled employee performance reviews should be expected for each team member, regardless of their position. In performance reviews, clearly state how they perform, where they are strong, and where there’s room for improvement before the next review.

Receiving clear direction and feedback from an employer without the threat of termination does wonders for morale and builds trust within the ranks.

Educational Opportunities

With U.S. unemployment staying below 4 percent, more employers are reducing educational requirements, thus employees are under-qualified for their roles. Left to flounder in their new position, employees on the route to failing, develop strong mistrust.

It’s easily avoided or corrected with applicable job training to ensure success. With less than one-third of US employees satisfied with educational opportunities on the job, it’s an area that’s ripe for improvement.

trustWork/Life Balance

Just 41.5 percent of those surveyed responded positively about their work/life balance. Other areas reflect similar values such as family leave, flexible scheduling, and sick leave. In essence, employees don’t feel their time is valued enough in the workplace.

Developing a culture that respects employees’ time off and honoring their commitment and dedication is pivotal. By making sure your team members each know that they’re appreciated pays dividends in building trust when they know they won’t be asked to stay late, rearrange their schedule, or come in on their days off.

People at Work

The top component in job satisfaction on the survey is regarding the people at work. At 62.4 percent, it shows that a workplace is a community, not just an office, store, or warehouse.

Continue to build trusting relationships among your team by encouraging your employees to participate in each other’s lives. Allow for time to chat among themselves (within reason, of course) and invest in team-building exercises or corporate events. Offer these not as rewards for a job well done but as encouragement to work toward success continually.

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