How to Build Confidence in Your Staff for Effective Management


Confidence is a feeling of well being that is directly influenced by the things that surround a person. Building confidence can be encouraged by scaffolding the environment, interactions, and training in support of your staff. It just makes sense that a manager, would work to influence an increasing confidence in his or her employees, to promote the well being of everyone. A company whose managerial staff is capable of such powerful agility in this area will thrive.

Hopefully, no leader would ever choose to disassemble the confidence of any employee in their charge, but by not paying attention to the culture in an office, it can happen. A manager must understand that their influence can create a positive or negative atmosphere. If a manager is effective, then they will be a positive influence -- one that builds confidence in the employees who work for them.

Focus Points:

1. A manager can build confidence in his or her staff by making sure they are trained well to do their job.

Hopefully, your staff members will come to you prepared to do the job for which they were hired. However, not only does staff need to keep up on the ever progressive technology that is required of them, your staff need to continually be challenged, introduced to new ideas and ways of doing their job.

Managers who keep staff challenged in creative methods, thinking more openly, or looking at the same issues in different ways, will give their employees a varied way to express their work, which will increase that feeling of well being or confidence.

The problems with training in most companies is that no one asks the employees what training they might like to have, or feel they need. Often, training is not well thought out, is thrown at employees with very little thought as to the effectiveness of the training, or the trainer. In every organization, professional development is a matter of course. It has become so much a part of the yearly calendar that it has become invisible.

When a staff is forced into periods of training that is of no worth, they question if the leaders have any awareness of them or their work at all. When a company wastes time and effort in this way, the effect is definitely negative in every aspect. The employee, whose time is wasted, whose ideas are never considered, and who will feel disrespected if this happens, will not have their confidence built up.

When the staff is involved in training that is important to them, training that fills a need they have expressed to management, when they see that someone has listened, and values their time, confidence is raised. They will feel as though the heads of the company pay attention to what they do, and who they are. They feel like they have worth.

2. Confidence comes from being treated with respect.

Respect is the treatment of others and yourself with genuine feelings of acknowledgment. The opposite is to ignore. Sometimes respect is more easily seen when you examine it for what it is not. When you pay no attention to a person, their ideas, their presence, who they are or what they do, then you are disrespectful. So to show respect is to give honest attention to a person, what they have to say, how they feel and think and act. Respect is not to agree with but to give credence to the fact that another person's viewpoints, opinions, and focus has worth, if not to you, to that person himself. It is not placating them, but accepting them for who they are.

Once you understand what respect is and what it is not, you begin to find ways to implement if as a basic attitude. If you can honestly allow another to be the person they are, while being okay with the person you are, then you are demonstrating respect. Being a role model is the best way to teach it to others. Feeling respected for being part of a team, for having others listen to you, and for being recognized, even in small ways, builds confidence.

Often managers fail to recognize there is so little cost in creating a positive atmosphere. When you change the environment by changing your own behavior, the payback is enormous. Showing respect for others will change the interaction within your company in so many ways, especially if it comes from the top down. It can however move from the bottom up. Respect stands out.

3. Managers can encourage confidence in their staff by encouraging positive interactions between team members or office workers.

Interested in learning more? Why not take an online Delegation Skills course?

When people in a company or area of a company feel there is an openness or an availability between staff, and staff and management, where all people feel comfortable enough to express themselves without reparations or assault, confidence is fostered. People, regardless of their position, need to feel an acceptance from others. Everyone needs to feel safe and supported as they work.

Positive interaction between people who are committed to the same cause can strengthen the worth of the company as well as the worth of the individual. People who are able to talk, work, and have fun together build bonds with each other. People who bond, support each other. People who feel that others support them will demonstrate confidence.

Development of good people skills is brought about with the regular display of positive interaction within a company. It should be modeled, promoted, and encouraged. It is not a simple idea, and it takes effort to bring people together when they only have their work in common, but if the leadership creates time and provides space and allows for such interaction, aside from the work of the day, then the work of the day will be more effective. Workers will develop the confidence to excel and move forward with less supervision, less stress, and with more productivity.

4. The physical environment, if it promotes health, calmness, and efficiency, will support the confidence of your staff.

Confidence can be built when you give support to your employees. One of the easiest ways to be supportive is to make sure the workplace meets their needs in every way. Workers need space and appropriate furniture to both do their job and to relax. The areas should be clean, well ventilated, and neat. The spaces should use colors and decor that is fresh and calming.

Everything that affects the senses can be considered when confronting the atmosphere or the environment of a work area. It should be safe, provide some quiet, and consider various personalities. There are many books about creating a space that promotes more effective work and a creative mind.

Supplying materials and opportunities that instill expression as well as production will only build the confidence of your workers. Knowing the company cares about their work, their physical and mental health, and their personal preferences aside from output, creates a feeling of self-worth within your team.

As a manager, don't overlook the simple acts of supplying a few creature comforts. When a person is treated like a machine, the person will react like a machine and the company will lose out. An employee treated like a human being will respond well, and the company will have access to all a person's skill, imagination, and personality in his work.

5 . When a manager or a company demonstrates appreciation of a job well done by the employees, it will build individual and team confidence.

There is not a person alive who does not feel good when their boss lets them know they are doing a good job, that they are appreciated, and make a difference to the organization. Appreciation comes in many forms and it is important for the manager to know what makes his individual staff members feel appreciated. Some people like recognition in front of others. Some like plaques, pins, or a visual recognition. Others don't like to be bragged on in public and prefer to simply be called into the office and told how much they contribute to the team.

Money is never a bad option when it is feasible. Gift cards if they aren't too specific can be a boost to a worker. Sometimes a plant, an extra break, a day off, or an early dismissal give the most pleasure.

Creating that feeling for an individual, that communicates they are a great employee, team member, creative worker, or excellent teammate will build confidence in anyone. The more a worker is recognized for positive things, the less negativity you will have to deal with. As a manager, it is your job to build your workers up. Lead them into confidence.


Mr. Manager had a team member who was inhibited and unwilling to take a project alone, or to be a team leader. Mr. Manager recognized skill and creative talent in this person and realized that for this person to effectively contribute to the team for the reasons he was hired, that he, as the manager, needed to build the man's confidence.

The manager decided to call the employee into his office one day with another team member to just brainstorm some ideas for a project. He encouraged and worked to push this man into expressing his opinions and thoughts. With only one other team member there, and a person Mr. Manager knew was friendly with the employee, this employee was able to speak freely and with confidence.

Mr. Manager called the two into his office later in the week and showed them a plan based on this inhibited employee's ideas. Mr. Manager brought out the merits of the plan and how the aspects of the ideas met the company's standards and goals. Mr. Manager brought the other team member in to make positive comments about the plan. Mr. Manager ask them to come back the next day to meet with one other team member to share what they had done.

The next day, Mr. Manager asked the employee to share the plan, taking a more leadership role within the small group. When the third team member expressed his own positive comments, Mr. Manager asked the three of them if they would work together on this project. Of course they all agreed. Then Mr. Manager asked the employee, who was usually unwilling, if he would take the lead. The others encouraged by the creative ideas the man demonstrated were very supportive, because they followed the manager's lead. The man agreed.

The next day Mr. Manager met again and demonstrated that he would be supportive and offer his guidance throughout. The employee gained confidence and the team gained this man's ability to lead them with his creative skills.

Set up your physical or computerized notebook:

Make three lists. First make a list of physical parts of a work environment that could be adjusted to increase the confidence of your team, including things that affect all the senses. Next, make another list of incentives that might build the confidence of various individuals. Give some thought to people you know and different possibilities. You might ask others what incentives they like to get or would like to get from a boss. Lastly, make a list of how you demonstrate respect to others in your own daily life. Figure out what you can do to improve that skill and be willing to practice it.


1. Can you think of a time you were offered training that helped you feel more confident?

2. Consider a time when you felt real respect from a person over you at work.

3. Think about times you have experienced positive interactions with co-workers and how you felt.

4. In what environment do you do your best work?

If you are unsure of these considerations, go back and review the material.