How do you build trust?

Michael Chanover
VP Design, Khan Academy

Choose one of the two scenarios below. Based on the triage of trust framework shared with your partner, how would you build trust in that situation?

Scenario 1  |  Building Trust as a new Design Manager

After years of your hard work as a senior designer, you’ve finally been promoted to a design manager role where you now have a team of 6 designers under you. Naturally, you’re excited, and you’re also a bit nervous. While you’re not positive, you believe that some of the designers on your team that you now manage felt that they deserved to be promoted, and you’re now their boss. But, there is no time to fret, as your consolation prize for being promoted, you’re in charge of a highly visible project that the CEO has her eyes on. Let the journey begin!

Based on the triage of trust framework, your first order of business is to build trust. What do you do? 

Scenario 2 | Assessing the Damage of Trust 

You’re the senior product designer working on a project and after 3 months of hard work, you and your team present to the CEO. She hates it! She feels like the team missed the mark on the solution by coming up with something that is “too big”. She asks the team, including you to go back to the drawing board and come up with alternatives. The team is crestfallen and frustrated. You see the CEO’s point, but you just didn’t think about using existing solutions, content and platforms, you assumed you were to create something anew. In specific terms, you’ve built trust with your team, but this review didn’t go as planned and you now need to maintain trust.

According to our triangle of trust, you now need to assess the damage by measuring the level of trust, and then get to building, or rebuilding trust. What do you do?

Make a copy of this Worksheet to work on it.