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Building Trust between Employer and Employees with Jacobs Model


How to drive employees performance in the workplace?

Among the most effective strategies to improve performance and motivation is by gaining trust that exists between employers and employees. Trust is important for both professional and personal relationships in the workplace. Managers need to trust their employees to get the work done, while employees need to trust their managers that they can lead the team to the right direction. Likewise, employees also need to trust each other as to create solid teamwork and conducive working environment.

In order to achieve this purpose, Susanne Jacobs, an organisational trust and engagement expert, creates a trust model that links eight intrinsic drivers of trust. Each of them is impacted by an individual’s psychological wellbeing and work environment, such that will lead to either positive or negative outcomes. The outcomes will depend on the application. When each of the drivers is satisfied, this leads to the positive outcome path such as engagement, energy release, boosted wellbeing and improved performance.

Let’s take a look at the following chart:

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taken from

Those eight intrinsic drivers are:  

Belong & connect,

If employees feel excluded at work, this will make them feel threatened and in turn have poor productivity and wellbeing. So, it is important to make sure that your team and employees feel connected. It will affect their productivity, health, and wellbeing.

Significance & position,

People are continually assessing their role within their organisation and what contribution they are making. Feeling valued of what they have done can give positive impact on employees performance in the workforce.

Learn & challenge,

Workers need to continuously learn in order to adapt the ever-changing modern work environment. Many researches have shown that employees who feel challenged are more productive.

Security & certainty,

If your employees feel secure in their position, they will give their best performance and will likely to increase their productivity levels.

Voice & recognition,

Encouraging views and ideas of your employees in workplace can give them the feeling of recognition and appreciation. This feeling can positively impact their happiness and wellbeing.


Treating each of your employees fairly and consistently is critical. If employee feel that they are being treated unfairly, they will feel a massive stress which impact in low productivity.  

Choice & autonomy,

Giving workers a degree of control and the ability to make their own choices can help them balance their work and home lives more effectively. It can also help them improve their performance at work.

and Purpose.

If your employees have a clear sense of purpose and are aware of exactly what their contribution is, they are more likely to be more engaged and productive.

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