Trust is built when people exhibit competence in their areas of expertise and show integrity through their personal interactions with others.

The quote above is from an article in this month’s edition of Talent Management.  The focus of the article is mentoring in a networked workplace.  The author clearly thinks of a networked workplace as one where the company has offices in multiple states or countries, employees who work from home offices, and others who do most of their work on the road.  But these days, every office is networked in some way or another so the guidelines provided in the article apply to everyone.

The days of hoarding information are long gone.  Success in the modern workplace requires information sharing.  Don’t be shy.  You might have the perspective or information that will make a difference for another person.  How would you feel if someone else possessed information that you needed but was unwilling to share?

In that spirit here are the high-level guidelines from the article and my thoughts on each.

  1. Give willingly and generously – The table at the top of this post clearly shows that limited sharing is an indication of partial engagement and a competitive atmosphere.  By competitive they mean competitive within the workplace (not good).
  2. Act humbly and courageously – Get ready for resistance and/or criticism.  They way you react to this will either build trust or barriers.
  3. Engage others honestly and openly – As trust is built, be ready to receive from others.  Accept their input and respond.  You don’t need to sugar coat your reaction but a little sugar won’t hurt.