What do you stand for?
A lot of people/leaders complain that their friends/teams don’t understand them. They feel that their actions are misinterpreted routinely and this is not what they meant.
It’s because everyone has a lens with which they see the world, and that lens defines what they see you as.
If your employees see you as a cruel selfish boss, anything you say will first pass through this lens of “cruelty and selfishness”. Even if you say something that will benefit them, because of this lens, they will try to find out what your hidden ‘selfish’ agenda is. And once they find an alternative explanation, they’ll never think logically.
Do not let others define you. Let them know what you stand for.