Trust as a Management Strategy

Nov 1, 2021

Companies use various methods to improve productivity. One such strategy, on the rise in popularity of late, is the use of time tracking and employee monitoring software. Many organizations have adopted these systems to ensure productivity. Others use it to pay freelancers and make similar hourly payments. 

It is often tempting to supervise people. If people know they are monitored, they should be working harder, we assume. You use certain tools, track the time and tasks of your people and ensure expected productivity. In some professions and work settings, this is an effective strategy. It drives results. Procrastination goes down. Every hour can be measured, quantified, and accounted for. People are bound to deliver. 

However, there are risks associated with this approach as well. It indicates you don’t completely trust your people. You don’t rely on their ability to complete work on time, operate independently, and don’t believe they own their work. This second challenge can lead to potential disaster and destruction of your culture.  People will turn bitter. Ownership for the organization will not grow. People will not work more than necessary. Innovation will stall. Leadership will not develop. 

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Ruhul Kader is a technology and business analyst based in Dhaka, Bangladesh. He is also the co-founder and CEO of Future Startup and author of Rethinking Failure: A short guide to living an entrepreneurial life. He writes about internet business, strategy, technology, technology policy, and society. He can be reached at

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