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Components of Trust

Page history last edited by Charles Fritz 9 years, 6 months ago

Components of Trust 


Ghislaine Caulat once said “It is a basic assumption of life in today’s global world of work that to create the best work you have to have the best team, regardless of geography”(Maister). The existence of virtual collaboration has made this possible.  When you have the ability to meet in remote locations, distance is not an issue. Virtual collaboration allows the best group/team to be created for the project despite the location of the members. As with any other group/team each member will be assigned a task to complete, and the other members have to trust that everyone will complete their part.  Trust is the key component in successful virtual collaboration. You must have a team of people that are credible and reliable, also software that is fully functioning and secure.




Establishing credibility is the most important factor in virtual collaboration. Credibility plays a large role in the output of the project. It includes knowing that each member of the group will deliver on time quality work, be at meetings when required, and be respectable to each other despite the location differences. If the group has decided to meet at a certain time and someone joins the meeting late, the group would then have to take time to catch that member up on the information missed.  For an incident like this to occur once would be understandable, but multiple occurrences would be very time consuming and unacceptable.


It is imperative that you be able to trust those you are working with and know that they can complete the tasks assigned to them. At the beginning of a new project the only thing you may know about the individuals are there names and that they too were assigned to that project. That does not provide much information on their work ethic. If you are working with individuals you have previously worked with. then you have likely already established a rapport with them. If you have never worked with the members of the group you are assigned, then this is your chance to establish that rapport. Either way credibility is the best way to develop and maintain a positive relationship with others.


When there is a disconnect between group/team members, tension and a level of uneasiness is created. This occurs because at that point you are unsure who you can trust to complete their portion of the project therefore not knowing how much extra time you will have do invest in the project. It is ideal for everyone to complete their own portion correct and timely, but this may not always occur. Having a member of the group act as a facilitator or manager will aid in this process. They can oversee the overall performance of the group to assure that everyone is aware of what they should be doing and see that things are getting done. To monitor the project the whole way, assures that its not a disaster in the end.


Some factors that help build your rapport would include: asking for help when you are uncertain of something or get stuck, and delivering on commitments that you have made. Asking for help is a sure way to inform your group that you do not know all of the answers and that when you are mystified you will ask for assistance rather than go forth making costly mistakes. Your group will then have confidence in the work you produce because they will be certain you understand the subject matter and will not just push papers through that will eventually have to be done over due to its poor quality. Delivering on commitments will guarantee that no one else has to complete those commitments you made.




Security is another component of trust.  When working via audio teleconference it is ideal that the only persons who know the access code to the conference are those invited to the meeting. Depending on the sensitivity of the data discussed, having unauthorized persons listening in on the meeting could be harmless or detrimental to the project.


Working via video conference is a bit more complex. The first thing that needs to be done before a video conference is preparation. Everyone who plans to attend the conference needs to make sure they have the software being used and security to protect it. “During a video conference, sensitive information and data travels across internal and external networks where it's susceptible to the prying eyes of hackers -- or in the case of the military, the enemy. If a network is hacked, the video-conference stream becomes the hacker's own private surveillance camera, recording and re-broadcasting corporate secrets and top-secret intelligence”.(Dileo)


The software that is being used for the video conference should require all accounts remain secure, all passwords be change frequently and should limit the number of times an incorrect password can be entered. In the event that a security violation exists, the account should be suspended until password clearance is resolved. Participants who are unable to correctly login to the video conference should not be able to attend.  


It is imperative that everyone who uses their computer for video conferencing have secure connections and firewalls and check antivirus software to make sure that they are current. Group members need to be able to trust that everyone has taken every possible precaution to protect against system corruptions. There  needs to be a dedicated system used just for meetings. You would not want to use the same system that is used to illegal download music, videos, movies or games to conduct a video conference. When you download from an unsecured network, you expose your system to all the threat and vulnerabilities that exist in the cyber world. 


Just recently Skype and Facebook have been in the media for security issues. Facebook which allows third party apps on its website were unaware that these apps were obtaining data from users who visited there sites. This type of activity is not okay on a system that has sensitive data on it. It would be rather difficult to explain to your employer that sensitive data may have been tampered with and your system was to blame. When you go on to these website and download, upload or stream things you again put your entire system at risk. To avoid these types of occurrences all together,keep your system safe if you plan to use it for collaborative purposes. Failure to do so can again effect your credibility which is the most important factor.




Whenever you are in a group the team expects you to be a dependable member. This would include attending any meetings planned, completing the work that you were assigned, and most importantly dedicate the required time to make your work the best quality possible. The expectations are no different in a virtual group. If every time the group calls a meeting you are not in attendance, are late or not attentive, then it will not be long before the group realizes that you are not dependable and begin to micromanage your progress on the project. By doing just the opposite of the above, you will develop a level of trust within the group and they will know that you are actually an asset to the group and not a burden. 


Another thing that can be done to establish dependability is make yourself available. If a group member is trying to communicate with you, respond. This would include answering their calls, replying quickly to emails, instant messages and again being at meetings on time, prepared.  If you are up to date on your project . there would be no need to ignore group members when they are trying to contact you. The group should establish hours for communication to assure that no one is receiving calls, or called to a meeting during times that are not convenient for all. Avoidance does nothing but create irritability and tension within the group.

Comments (1)

nicacn@... said

at 2:11 pm on Oct 31, 2010

This segment covers the topic well I think. There are quite a few spelling and grammatical errors that should be corrected however. When I read something with a lot of errors, it discourages from reading further. And since this is a publicly published electronic document that people of different geographies and cultures must relate to, it's critical that it utilizes proper form. Some readers may not be able to understand what meaning was intended if English is not their native language.

A couple of examples are:

Paragraph 3: "When you have group projects no one wants to here that someone did not complete there portion there for the project is incomplete."

This comments should read as follows:

"When you have group projects no one wants to hear that someone did not complete their portion of the project." OR "When you have group projects, no one wants to hear that
someone has not completed their portion of the work."

The same idea can be expressed in may ways, but the sentence structure requires proper use of hear vs. here and their vs. there.

Another example is the statement in Paragraph 4 which reads as follows:

"Asking for help is a sure way to inform your group that you do not know all of the answers and that when you are stomped you will ask for assistance rather than go forth making costly mistakes."

This statement should read more like this...

"Asking for help is a sure way to inform your group that you do not know all of the answers and that when you are stumped you will ask for assistance rather than go forth making costly mistakes."

The information here is good and with minor edits it will be great!

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