Dealing with Small and Large Trust Issues with Employees

Once you have a bad experience with an untrustworthy employee, you may have difficulty trusting your employees again. This kind of bad experience could be small; maybe someone is just taking home paper from the mailroom. Or it could be big, such as when someone is selling your company secrets to a competitor.

Obviously bigger bad experiences will lead into more trust issues with your employees but even smaller ones can leave a bad taste in your mouth. After all, why would someone want to steal supplies from your mailroom which it would be well within their capacity to buy?

Dealing with Smaller Trust Issues with Employees

At some point, you have to stop asking yourself “why” and just decide how you’re going to deal with employees like this. If the issue is a small one, you can let the person off with a warning. Maybe they were just being too lazy to buy printer paper on their way home and decided to take some from your mailroom instead.

It’s not a big thing but you want to nip it in the bud. Put up a sign in the mailroom or tell everyone in an office meeting (without singling anyone out) that such behavior is not acceptable.

Dealing with Larger Trust Issues with Employees

Obviously if someone is stealing company secrets or embezzling funds, you’re going to have to let them go. And you can decide whether it’s worth your time and money to bring charges against that person.

If it doesn’t seem like they stole anything of that much value, then you might just fire them and be done with it. But if they stole something important and sold it to a competitor, you may want to bring legal charges to make sure that no one else is going to use your idea.

Getting Back to Normal

Once this kind of event has occurred, however, you need to get back to work and running your company again. And that means that you have to trust your other employees to do their jobs.

The best way to handle things is to have a company meeting and tell everyone what happened and how you handled it. This way, they’ll know the consequences of fraudulent behavior.

By and large, you’ll find that people aren’t out to swindle you or pull a fast one over you. As long as you run background checks before hiring people, trust your gut and maintain good relations with everyone on your team, there’s no reason for such an event to occur again.