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Developing high trust work relationships

This course is specifically designed to enable individuals to develop their leadership skills through a deeper understanding of trust in the workplace. You will examine the impact of trust, both on your organisation and the individuals within it. This course also offers you a unique opportunity to explore your own propensity to trust, and what is important for you to trust other people. Utilising this knowledge, along with the tools and techniques on building trust, you can engender trust within your work context.

Standalone study only

You will not be awarded credits for studying this course. It is available for standalone study only and cannot be counted towards an OU qualification.

Short course

Short course code
This is a non-credit bearing course.
Study method
Distance Learning
Short course cost
See Registration
Entry requirements
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What you will study

This course aims to identify how the establishment of high trust relationships in the workplace can enable leaders, to build productive organisations.  It identifies the importance of trust and how it is perceived within organisations. The course helps you to develop, as a leader, the knowledge and skills to build and maintain trust relationships within the workplace. You will undertake a number of sessions of online study. These include learning materials in a variety of formats including articles, video clips and activities. 

You will learn

On completing this course you will be able to:

  • understand the role and importance of trust in modern organisations
  • explore the nature of trust within organisation and the forms trust might take
  • understand the influence that leaders have on organisational levels of trust
  • assess your own position regarding interpersonal trust in relation to your role as a leader
  • identify the influence that leaders have on organisational levels of trust might apply to your own organisation
  • reflect on your own practice and professional development
  • articulate and communicate your development of practice in writing
  • explore a number of practical techniques for improving organisational levels of trust.

In addition, this course forms part of a suite of Short Courses and has the following generic learning outcomes:

  • understand a defined area of knowledge and/or professional skill which updates or extends their professional capacity
  • able to demonstrate how to apply this knowledge and skill to their current and future professional practice.

Learner support

Expert, confidential learner support is available when you need it from a learning adviser, who will respond to you direct within 24 hours. Other support is available via the course forum, library, StudentHome website and computing helpdesk.

Work-based activity

The work-based activity for this course comprises two parts. The first part asks you to reflect on your learning of the course and to choose two concepts to explore in greater depth.  The second part asks you to utilise specific tools and techniques in your work place.

Outside the UK

This course may be studied outside the UK, subject to the standard Open University regulations.

Teaching and assessment


All assessment is via the work-based activity. This is marked by the learning advisers and you will receive feedback on your submission. Upon successful completion of the work-based activity, you will receive a certificate of completion.


As a student of The Open University, you should be aware of the content of the academic regulations which are available on our Essential Documents website.

    Entry requirements

    There are no entry requirements for this course, although it is specifically targeted at people working in a leadership role.

    The course is open for registration at any point during the year and you can submit your work based activity at any point within the following periods:

    • Registration between 1 November 2014 and 31 October 2015: final cut off for work-based activity submission is 9 April 2016
    • Registration between 1 November 2015 and 31 October 2016: final cut off for work-based activity submission is 9 April 2017.


    Start End England fee Register
    At anytime Flexible - see Entry requirements for more detail £535.00 Register

    Ways to pay

    Credit/Debit Card – We accept American Express, Mastercard, Visa/Delta or Visa Electron.

    Sponsorship – If this course is geared towards your job or developing your career, you could ask your employer to sponsor you by paying some or all of the fees. Your sponsor just needs to complete a simple form to confirm how much they will be paying and we will invoice them.

    What's included

    This is an online course. All resources required to study this course are available through the course website.

    Computing requirements

    A computing device with a browser and broadband internet access is required for this module.  Any modern browser will be suitable for most computer activities. Functionality may be limited on mobile devices.

    Any additional software will be provided, or is generally freely available. However, some activities may have more specific requirements. For this reason, you will need to be able to install and run additional software on a device that meets the requirements below.

    A desktop or laptop computer with either:

    • Windows 7 or higher
    • macOS 10.7 or higher

    The screen of the device must have a resolution of at least 1024 pixels horizontally and 768 pixels vertically.

    To participate in our online-discussion area you will need both a microphone and speakers/headphones. 

    Our Skills for OU study website has further information including computing skills for study, computer security, acquiring a computer and Microsoft software offers for students. 

    If you have a disability

    The course is delivered online and makes use of a variety of online resources. If you use specialist hardware or software to assist you in using a computer or the internet you are advised to contact us about support which can be given to meet your needs. If you are a new learner with the OU, make sure that you look at our website.