According to a study by Modern Survey, trust is the most important factor in employee engagement, which fuels productivity, growth, and longevity. Establishing a culture of trust between caregivers and their supervisors is then fundamental to any home care company’s growth. Caregivers need to know that their supervisors will support them and lead them; however, trust does not simply appear one day—it must be earned over time. These steps are keys to gaining a caregiver’s trust and keeping it:
1. Set goals
Every company has a mission, but chances are that not all of your employees know that mission or what role they play in it. As a supervisor, you should regularly discuss your company mission with your caregivers and set goals that work toward achieving it. After setting goals, you should consistently follow up on your caregivers’ progress. Caregivers will take their goals and their supervisors seriously, when they see that their supervisors are actively invested in helping them succeed.
2. Follow through
Whatever you say you’ll do, do it. If you tell your caregiver that you’ll find someone to cover a shift, do it. If you say you’ll communicate with their client about a schedule change, do it. And if for some reason you can’t do what you said you would, let the caregiver know. It sounds simple, but trust is based on a foundation of consistently fulfilling commitments.
3. Do something extra
Completing reports and helping with scheduling are job requirements. It’s the little extra things outside of your job requirements that really help you earn trust. Birthday cards, employee lunches, messages to see how a caregiver is doing. These small things set a supervisor apart and show that you don’t just care about the work, you also care about the person.
4. Set expectations
Whether you’re just getting started with a new caregiver or you’ve been working with one for years, it’s important to make your expectations clear. How often will the caregiver need to call? What should the caregiver do with questions? What should the caregiver do if there’s a problem? These expectations should be established up front. If your caregiver knows what’s expected, they’ll be more likely to achieve it, and if there’s a problem, the rules won’t come as a surprise.
5. Be direct and timely
If there’s a change in policy, scheduling, training, etc., be quick to let your caregivers know. Explain why the change was made and how it will affect them. Even if the changes are not favorable for the caregiver, she or he will appreciate that the information was passed in a timely and clear way. You’ll come to be a dependable and trustworthy source of information.
Leaders should not underestimate trust’s power in driving a company’s success. Trust improves engagement, performance, and culture. Leaders who make building trust a priority will find that it has ripple effects into all aspects of their organizations’ success.