Workplace confidence hits a new low

One in four people don't trust their boss, says new study

Tuesday, 27th September 2016, 2:03 pm
Updated Wednesday, 5th October 2016, 2:31 pm
The lovely Ascog Bay

As unemployment has fallen to a ten-year low of 4.9 per cent, a quarter of Brits don’t trust their boss, a new study has found.

A poll, of 2,000 people, has revealed that on average 1 in 4 employees doesn’t trust their boss, with workers in the North East (30%) being most distrusting of those that cover their pay cheques.

Around one in ten don’t always trust their sibling, while the average Brit takes almost three months to fully trust someone after first meeting them.

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On average we need 87 days to get to know someone before we can feel we can completely depend on them.

And while 10 per cent of adults claim to trust someone within minutes, almost the same number (8%) admit it can be years before they feel able to let their guard down completely.

The study, commissioned by Network VEKA (, the UK’s most trusted window installer network also revealed that maintaining eye contact, always texting back and happily sharing your phone or social media passwords are among the top signs you can be trusted. While those who spread office gossip or fidget when talking are among the things that make Brits untrustworthy.

In a month where trust of politicians is at an all time low, research has unveiled that there’s more bad news for the House of Commons as politicians have been named the least trustworthy profession, closely followed by car salesmen, estate agents, bankers and builders.

A spokesman for Network VEKA( , said: “Being able to trust someone you don’t know that well is difficult, especially if you have had a bad experience in the past.

“But we have to trust people to some degree everyday – whether we have a close relationship with them or not, such as our children’s teachers, workmen and even our work colleagues.

“As a result, it can take time to put your trust in someone completely, and we are constantly on the look-out for signs that we can trust someone when we don’t yet know them well enough to base it on anything else.

“Some of these are really just common sense, but it appears the way you talk, act and even how you look can all be considered when someone is deciding whether or not to trust you.”

The study found only making promises you know you can keep is the biggest sign of how trustworthy you are, followed by always maintaining eye contact, speaking your mind and rarely, or never turning up late.

Having good personal hygiene, a firm handshake and soft kind eyes also in the top ten

But technology has had an impact on the signs we look for when judging how trustworthy someone is, with always texting back, being able to leave your social media accounts open around them without them tampering with it and being happy to share your phone PIN or social media passwords on the list.

Other indications someone can be trusted is keeping a spoiler or big film ending to themselves because you haven’t seen it yet, leaving their mobile phone unlocked around you and having good teeth.

And almost half of the adults polled believe you can tell how trustworthy someone is simply from their appearance.

Researchers also found just 24 per cent of Brits find it easy to trust someone, with 60 per cent saying it takes them weeks or more before they feel completely at ease.

In fact, while the average adult has a relationship of some kind with 26 people – they trust just 16 of them.

Worryingly, seven per cent admitted to not trusting their best friend, while one in twenty have doubts about their partner.

But 41 per cent of people believe it is harder to trust people these days due to modern technology, while 75 per cent say bad experiences in the past have meant they struggle to rely on someone completely.

And of the 17 per cent who struggle to trust tradesman, 44 per cent put this down to a bad experience in the past, while four in ten are put off by TV shows about cowboy builders.

Knowing a tradesman who isn’t completely trustworthy (29%), stories you’ve heard from friends or relatives (38%) and stereotypes (24%) are also among the reasons for not trusting a tradesman completely.

Word of mouth from friends or relatives is most likely to help people have more trust in a tradesman, along with being part of an accredited body and having tidy equipment.

A spokesman for Network VEKA ( added: “The study has found that the stigma of cowboy builders and difficulty trusting tradesmen still prevails among Brits.

“We always recommend using a supplier who is part of a recognised scheme or accredited body to avoid falling foul of tradesmen who are aren’t qualified, overcharge and provide shoddy service.”

Network VEKA ( first launched 20 years ago to fill a very specific gap in the market – to offer hard-working companies a way to prove their commitment to quality, while also protecting the consumer from unknown installation companies and unscrupulous, door-to-door, double glazing salespeople.

Network VEKA ( was the first of its kind and still leads the industry in its 20th year. With a white glove service of care, knowledge and attention to detail, it’s this element that creates a point of difference for the innovative organisation above and beyond the other brands out there.

Installers must request to be part of Network VEKA ( and are thoroughly vetted on an ongoing basis, checking everything from their financial records, to customer service history to their quality of workmanship. It is an exclusive scheme that’s membership is highly sought-after.

Top 25 signs of trustworthiness

· They don’t make promises they can’t keep

· Maintaining eye contact

· They aren’t afraid to tell the truth or speak their mind

· They are never, or rarely late

· They don’t join in with office gossip

· Good personal hygiene

· A firm handshake

· They have soft, kind eyes

· They always text you back

· They smile at you

· You can leave your Facebook/social media accounts logged in around them

· They can keep a spoiler/big ending to themselves before you’ve seen it

· You are happy to give them your bank card and PIN

· A pair of good clean shoes

· They never divert your calls

· They give you their mobile phone PIN/passcode

· They will leave their mobile unlocked

· A clean and tidy car

· Clothes which aren’t creased

· They won’t solo watch if you’ve agreed to watch a box set together

· They have good teeth

· They have a symmetrical face

· They have neat eyebrows

· They wear glasses

· They have a beard

Top ten signs you aren’t trustworthy

· They talk about you behind your back to other people

· They don’t always pay you back when you lend them money

· They don’t make, or maintain eye contact

· They fidget when they speak to you

· They are the first to spread office gossip

· They talk over you or don’t listen

· They question your trust

· They are always late

· They touch their mouth when they speak to you

· They leave the room when they make or receive a phone call

Top ten professions we find hardest to trust

· Politicians

· Car salesmen

· Estate agents

· Bankers

· Builders

· Mechanics

· Footballers

· The police

· Your own profession/work colleagues

· Electricians