WFH正在侵蚀我们对彼此的信任
WFH Is Corroding Our Trust in Each Other
2063字
2021-02-13 01:12
6394阅读
火星译客

In early 2020, the switch to remote or hybrid work was abrupt for many companies. While employees were willing to give one another some latitude earlier in the pandemic, now, almost a year in, their trust is wearing thin, and some find themselves wondering whether their remote employees are actually working at home. Companies that fail to address this crisis are likely to see lower morale, increased attrition, lower productivity, and stalled innovation. Leaders need to address the underlying issues in order to build a sustainable model of trust.

2020年初,许多公司突然转向远程办公或混合办公。虽然在疫情爆发初期,员工们愿意给彼此一些自由,但现在,将近一年过去了,他们的信任正在逐渐减弱,一些人发现自己在怀疑远程员工是否真的在家工作。未能解决这一危机的公司可能会士气低落,人员流失增加,生产率下降,创新停滞不前。为了建立可持续的信任模式,领导者需要解决根本问题。

About a third of the employees of a regional bank have returned to working onsite, and the president holds a weekly all-staff town hall meeting by videoconference. Employees are encouraged to submit anonymous questions for him or other senior leaders to answer. For the past six weeks, an increasing number of people have asked, “How do we know if the people who are still working from home are actually working?” Some employees have even suggested specific technology-based monitoring approaches to track remote workers' onscreen time and activities.

一家地区性银行大约三分之一的员工已经回到了现场工作,总统每周通过视频会议召开全体员工市政厅会议。公司鼓励员工提交匿名问题让高层领导回答。在过去的六周里,越来越多的人提出这样的问题:“我们怎么知道那些仍然在家工作的人是否真的在工作?”一些员工甚至建议使用特定的技术监控方法来跟踪远程员工在屏幕上的时间和活动。

Each week, the president assures his employees that the business is on track and that measures of productivity (like the number of loans taken out) are above expectations. “But it's exasperating,” he said. “No matter how much I try to convince them or even use numbers and other kinds of evidence, it's not sinking in. You'd think that if I can trust people, surely they can trust each other, right? But no.”

每周,领导都会向他的员工保证,业务进展顺利,生产效率(如贷款数量)高于预期。“但这让人恼火,”他说。“无论我多么努力地说服他们,甚至不惜使用数据或其他证据,他们都无法理解。你会想如果我能信任别人,他们也一定能信任彼此,对吧?但并非如此。”

The crisis of trust this bank is facing is increasingly common as the strains of remote working wear down company culture and people's goodwill. Early in the pandemic, stories of organizational heroics — like companies repurposing laptops en masse overnight to equip employees' homes — abounded. And for a while, people gave each other the benefit of the doubt and didn't mind making compromises like allowing the occasional deadline to slip so that people could take care of homeschooling or other new demands.

因为远程工作的压力消耗了公司文化和人们的善意,这家银行面临的信任危机波及面越来越广。在疫情初期,企业的英勇事迹比比皆是——比如企业在一夜之间重新使用笔记本电脑,企业为员工的家里添置设备。有一段时间,人们对彼此保持友善,不介意做出妥协,比如允许偶尔推迟最后期限,这样人们就可以照顾家庭教育或其他新的要求。

Over the past eight months, we've worked with and researched dozens of companies that are wrestling with this challenge in settings as varied as professional services, oil and gas, finance and insurance, healthcare, telecommunications, automotive, and tech. In each of them, we've seen a shift from the positive, “We've figured out this virtual work thing!” sentiments to the recognition that trust in their organizations — in individuals, relationships, and the organization — is fundamentally at risk. Increased reports of electronic monitoring also suggest that executives' confidence in having figured it out is starting to ebb. For example, Hubstaff, a provider of time-tracking tools for remote work, reported a four-fold increase in its UK customers since February of 2020, and Sneek, whose technology takes webcam pictures of employees on a regular interval and shares them with colleagues, reported a five-fold increase.

在过去八个月中,我们一起工作,同时研究数十家公司应对这一挑战的方式,他们的领域涉及了:专业服务、石油和天然气,金融、保险、医疗、电信、汽车、和技术。我们看到每一个公司都在积极转变,“我们已经弄清了线上办公的模式!”认识到对组织的信任——对个人、关系和组织的信任——从根本上来说是有风险的。越来越多的电子监控报告也表明,高管们对解决这一问题的信心开始下降。例如,为远程工作提供时间跟踪工具的Hubstaff报告称,自2020年2月以来,其英国客户数量增长了4倍,而Sneek公司的技术是定期通过网络摄像头拍摄员工照片并与同事分享,其英国客户数量增长了5倍。

It's critical that company leaders work to rebuild and maintain trusting relationships — with and among their employees. Those that don't risk far more than lower morale. The chances of increased attrition, lower productivity, and stalled innovation also loom large when trust plummets.

公司领导努力重建和维护与员工之间的信任关系至关重要。那些不愿意冒的风险带来的危害远不止于降低士气。当信任度骤降时,大量的人员流失、生产率降低和创新停滞的问题也逐渐暴露出来。

Why the Crisis of Trust Now?

为什么现在会出现信任危机?

Companies have experimented with work-from-home policies for years, so what's new now? First, remote work is now widespread. Companies previously allowed select employees to work from home, either because those specific employees were highly trusted or because their work allowed managers to measure their output and hold them accountable. Now everyone is at home, regardless of past performance level or job.

多年来,很多公司都在尝试在家工作的政策,现在又有什么新变化呢?首先,远程办公现在很普遍。以前,公司允许挑选出的员工在家工作,要么是因为这些特定的员工受到高度信任,要么是因为他们的工作让管理者能够衡量他们的产出并对他们负责。现在无论过去的表现如何,每个人都在家办公。

Second, when stay-at-home mandates hit around the globe, people were involuntarily thrust into remote work — often without the equipment, training, or desire to do it. Whereas before, employees may have opted to work remotely, many are now struggling to focus at home thanks to increased familial responsibilities or because other members of their household are also working from home.

其次,当全球都在要求居家办公时,人们被迫进行这项工作的——他们通常没有设备、没有培训,也不想这样。以前,员工可能倾向于选择远程工作,而现在,由于家庭责任的增加,或者因为他们的其他家庭成员也在家工作,许多人都难以集中精力在家工作。

Third, uncertainty about the economy and job stability breeds anxiety, which tends to prompt a go-it-alone mode of working among employees and a general wariness of others.

第三,对经济和工作稳定性的不确定性会滋生焦虑,这往往会促使员工选择单干,并容易对他人产生戒心。

Finally, employees' WFH challenges (including technology failures, shifting work norms, and conflicts between work and home responsibilities) make it more likely that they'll fail to deliver on perceived obligations, leading to a further erosion of trust. Critically, though, the factors reducing this ability to trust are not limited only to the effects of Covid-19, but are tied to ongoing trends in the way we design our work and organizations. Leaders need to address the underlying issues in order to build a sustainable model of trust.

最后,员工的WFH挑战(包括技术失败、工作规范的转变以及工作和家庭责任之间的冲突)使他们更有可能无法履行他们所认为的义务,导致信任的进一步侵蚀。然而,至关重要的是,降低这种信任能力的因素不仅限于Covid-19的影响,而且与我们设计工作和组织的方式的当前趋势有关。领导者需要解决根本问题,以建立可持续的信任模式。

A Loss of Information Undermines Trust

信息的丢失会让信任崩坏

Predictability is the foundation of trust. We're willing to be vulnerable — to expose ourselves to potential risk — when we have reason to believe that someone will not take advantage of us or disappoint us. This comes only when we think we can anticipate how others will behave. One of us, Heidi K. Gardner, researched more than 3,000 senior knowledge workers and identified two distinct kinds of trust that are essential for people to work together effectively. First, they need to believe that others will deliver and that the work will be high quality (competence trust). Second, they need to believe that others have good intentions and high integrity (interpersonal trust). To trust colleagues in both of these ways, people need clear and easily discernible signals about them — what they're doing (actions), why they're doing it (motivations), and whether they'll continue to do it (reliability).

信任的基础是可以预测的。当我们有理由相信别人不会利用我们或让我们失望时,我们愿意变得脆弱——将自己暴露在潜在的风险中。只有当我们认为我们可以预测别人的行为时,这种情况才会出现。我们中的一员海蒂·k·加德纳(Heidi K. Gardner)研究了3000多名高级知识型员工,发现了两种截然不同的信任,这对人们有效合作至关重要。首先,他们需要相信其他人会交付,并且成果将是高质量的(能力和信任)。第二,他们需要相信别人有良好的意图和高度的诚信(人际信任)。要想在这两方面都信任同事,人们需要对他们发出清晰且容易识别的信号——他们在做什么(行动),为什么要这样做(动机),以及他们是否会继续这样做(可靠性)。

Over the past two decades, the moves toward remote working and dynamically shifting teams has made this information harder to come by. Less face-to-face time means that we have less opportunity to observe, for example, that a teammate consistently brings along prepared notes and diagrams to enhance the conversation. We also have fewer shared sidebar conversations that build rapport and interpersonal trust, and we lack situational cues — like the leftover pizza boxes as evidence colleagues pulled an all-nighter — to understand others' efforts and outputs. This makes it difficult to establish trust in others because we don't have the data we need to know what they'll do. It also eliminates the steady stream of reinforcing information that helps us maintain existing trust. The isolation of remote working may be tied to lower trust for another reason: we unconsciously interpret a lack of physical contact as a signal of untrustworthiness.

在过去的20年里,远程工作的发展和团队的动态转移使得这些信息更难获得。面对面交流的时间越少,就意味着我们观察到的机会越少,例如,为了保证对话效率,团队成员总是带着准备好的笔记和图表。我们也很少有可以建立融洽关系和人际信任的共享侧栏对话,我们也缺乏情境线索——就像同事们通宵工作时留下的披萨盒——来理解其他人的努力和成果。这使得我们很难建立对他人的信任,因为我们没有我们需要的数据来知道他们会做什么。它还消除了帮助我们维持现有信任的稳定的强化信息流。远程工作的孤立感可能与较低的信任度有关,这还有另一个原因:我们无意识地将缺乏身体接触解读为不值得信任的信号。

在虚拟工作中,误解和误解比比皆是。因此,我们面临的是一场完美的风暴,用来建立信任的信息越来越少,用来维持信任的强化信息越来越少,而破坏信任的“违规行为”越来越多。信任一旦失去,就很难再重获。领导者应该采取一些措施——也不应该采取一些措施——来恢复对自己和员工关系的信任。

Monitoring Is Not the Answer

监控不是解决问题的办法

An increasingly common approach to dealing with decreased trust is to counter it with increased monitoring. Whether done through technology (for example, keystroke capture) or process (for example, daily check-ins), monitoring is usually counterproductive.

一处理信任度下降的一种越来越常见的方法是通过增加监视来应对这种情况。 
无论是通过技术(例如,击键捕获)还是通过流程(例如,每日签入)进行监视,通常都是适得其反的。

First, it never works. Any manager who thinks they can know everything their remote employees are doing is fooling themselves; there will always be gaps in any monitoring process. Second, people perform to the measure, not to the objective. It doesn't take much to figure out how to get around the measures themselves, and employees often put more effort into working around them than into just doing the work. Third, monitoring isn't just ineffective — it actually makes the problem worse. One survey found that 49% of employees subject to stringent monitoring reported severe anxiety, compared to only 7% of those subject to low levels of monitoring. Monitoring can also increase burnout and employee dissatisfaction and undermine firm morale.

首先,它从来都不起作用。任何认为自己可以了解远程员工所做的一切的经理都是在欺骗自己;在任何监控过程中都会有漏洞。第二,人们是按照衡量来执行的,而不是按照目标。要弄清楚如何绕过这些度量本身并不需要花费太多的精力,而且员工通常会在围绕这些度量工作上付出更多的努力,而不仅仅是完成工作。第三,监控不仅仅是无效的——它实际上让问题变得更糟。一项调查发现,受到严格监控的员工中有49%表示存在严重焦虑,而受到低水平监控的员工中只有7%表示存在严重焦虑。监控还会增加员工的倦怠感和不满情绪,并削弱公司的士气。

There are few stronger signals that you don't trust someone than putting them under surveillance.

没有什么比监视某人更能表明你不信任他了。

Understanding the Science of Trust

理解信任的科学

Monitoring fails because it tries to solve the wrong part of the trust equation — it's about managers trying to eliminate the space for vulnerability. The better approach is to leave the space alone, but reduce the likelihood that someone will take advantage of it (and you). This doesn't mean trusting blindly, but rather relying on the science of trust to build it in the least risky way possible.

监控之所以失败,是因为它试图解决信任等式中错误的部分——它是关于管理者试图消除漏洞的空间。更好的方法是不干涉空间,但减少别人(和你)利用它的可能性。这并不意味着盲目地信任,而是依靠信任的科学,以尽可能低风险的方式建立信任。

Recognize and leverage reciprocal trust. So often, when we talk about trust, we focus on how we develop it in other people. This misses the fact that trust is bi-directional and reciprocal — research shows that the more you trust someone and act accordingly, the more likely they are to trust you in return. Importantly, these do not operate independently. This means that in order to increase trust within your network, you need to shift your focus to signaling your own trustworthiness. Increasing others' trust in you reduces uncertainty by creating a more stable and certain environment. Thinking in more Machiavellian terms, it also provides reciprocal leverage — the more trust they place in you, the less likely they will be to betray your trust (think mutually assured destruction as the underpinning of the entire Cold War). This is not setting yourself up to be taken advantage of; this is a strategic move that de-risks trust-building. And remember that which signals you send is one of the few things you do have control over.

承认和发挥互信作用。所以,当我们谈论信任时,我们往往关注于如何培养他人的信任。这忽略了一个事实:信任是双向的、互惠的——研究表明,你越信任某人并采取相应的行动,他们也越有可能反过来信任你。重要的是,它们并不是独立运作的。这意味着,为了在你的人际网络中增加信任,你需要把注意力转移到表明你自己的可信度上。增加别人对你的信任,通过创造一个更稳定和确定的环境来减少不确定性。从马基雅维利的角度来看,它还提供了互惠杠杆——他们对你的信任越多,他们背叛你信任的可能性就越小(把“确保相互毁灭”看作整个冷战的基础)。这不是让你自己被人利用;这是一项降低建立信任风险的战略举措。记住,你发出的信号是你能控制的少数事情之一。

Build a trust staircase. Across substantial research on change (behavior change, culture change, you name it), one message comes through clearly: The best way to create lasting change is through repeated, small, reinforcing steps. Building trust is no exception — it requires evidence and reinforcement. Another way to increase the trust others place in you is to audition for it by finding opportunities to work together on a low-risk task, which gives you a chance to demonstrate your competence and integrity. For example, offer to jointly organize a lunch-and-learn series, where people (not just you!) can showcase their abilities. Look for situations that require minimal investments and for which the opportunity and failure costs are low. Demonstrate your own trustworthiness within that context and then, over time, build up to larger and more significant demonstrations to reinforce the trust you're establishing.

建立一个信任阶梯。通过对改变(行为改变、文化改变,你能想到的)的大量研究,一个信息清晰地传达出来:创造持久改变的最佳方式是通过重复的、小的、加强的步骤。建立信任也不例外——它需要证据和强化。另一种增加别人对你信任的方法是试着找到机会一起完成一项低风险的任务,这给了你一个机会来展示你的能力和正直。例如,共同组织一个午餐学习系列活动,在这个活动中人们(不仅仅是你!)可以展示他们的能力。寻找需要最少投资、机会和失败成本都很低的情况。在这种情况下展示你自己的可信赖性,然后,随着时间的推移,建立更大、更重要的展示,以加强你正在建立的信任。

Engage in status-quo communication. Leaders know how important it is to communicate when things change. However, now, as things are in a constant state of flux, leaders also need to communicate about things that aren't changing. Given that trust depends so heavily on predictability, leaders must recognize the critical importance of helping employees understand what they can count on. Doing so reduces uncertainty and creates a needed sense of stability.

沟通现状。领导者知道,当事情发生变化时,沟通是多么重要。然而,现在,由于事物处于不断变化的状态,领导者也需要就没有变化的事物进行沟通。鉴于信任在很大程度上取决于可预见性,领导者必须认识到帮助员工了解他们可以依靠什么至关重要。这样做可以减少不确定性,创造一种必要的安全感。

Assume one-size-fits-none trusting. Trust building, maintenance, and recovery work differently for different types of people, who fall into two broad categories: automatic trusters and evidence-based trusters.

假设放之欧元区任何一国皆不准信任。信任的建立、维护和恢复对不同类型的人有不同的作用,他们可以分为两大类:自动信任者和基于证据的信任者。

  • Automatic trusters approach a new relationship with at least some level of trust as the default, initially trusting the other party unless something happens to break that trust. This isn't blind trust, but rather an inclination to give the benefit of the doubt. They're minimally affected by fewer trust-building cues, and trust infractions trigger a challenge to their self-image, provoking a more severe and long-lasting backlash.
  • Evidence-based trusters approach a new relationship with distrust as the default, not exposing themselves to risk until the other party has proven their trustworthiness. The lack of evidence characteristic of remote work makes it significantly more difficult to establish trust in virtual environments. Once trust is established (based on accumulated evidence), only major infractions are likely to significantly counter or undo that evidence.
  • 自动信任者以至少一定程度的信任作为默认建立一种新的关系,一开始就信任对方,除非发生一些事情破坏了这种信任。这并不是盲目的信任,而是一种倾向,它假定对方是可以信任的。他们很少受到建立信任线索的影响,违反信任会对他们的自我形象产生挑战,引发更严重和更持久的反作用。
  • 以证据为基础的信任者以不信任为默认原则来建立一种新的关系,在对方证明自己的可信度之前,他们不会让自己暴露于风险之中。 
    缺乏远程工作的证据特征使得在虚拟环境中建立信任变得更加困难。一旦信任建立(基于积累的证据),只有重大违规才有可能显著反或撤销证据。

A critical first step is to not assume that others build trust as you do. With that in mind, you must do the homework required to know both your own and your counterpart's approaches to trusting and put in the effort to adapt accordingly. If you're an automatic truster and your counterpart is more evidence-based, you need to slow down your expectations and focus on providing that person with ongoing, repeated evidence of your predictability and trustworthiness. If you're building the evidence for your trust case and your counterpart is trusting you on arrival, it's critical that you keep an eye out for your own behaviors that may signal an infraction for them.

关键的第一步是不要假设别人会像你一样建立信任。记住这一点,你必须做好必要的功课,了解自己和对方信任你的方法,并付出相应的努力去适应。如果你是一个自动信任别人的人,而你的对手更注重证据,你就需要降低你的期望,专注于为那个人提供持续的、反复的证据,证明你的可预测性和可信度。如果您正在为您的信任案例建立证据,而您的对手在到达时也信任您,那么您必须密切注意自己的行为,这些行为可能表明您违反了他们的准则。

Widespread remote work is likely to stick around for a while yet. Company leaders who want to maintain morale and avoid negative outcomes like increased attrition must take steps to establish (or reestablish) trust among their employees.

广泛的远程工作可能还会持续一段时间。公司领导者如果想保持士气,避免出现像人员消耗增加这样的负面结果,就必须采取措施在员工之间建立(或重新建立)信任。

0 条评论
评论不能为空