Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who will be returning to the cut and thrust of Question Period this week after the House adjourned for two weeks, finally held a press conference on March 7 to explain his role in the SNC-Lavalin scandal. He talked about the erosion of trust over the past months between his office, specifically between his principal secretary Gerry Butts and his former minister of justice and attorney general Jody Wilson-Raybould. Explaining his leadership style, he said, he believes in an environment where his caucus members, cabinet ministers, and staffers should be able to reach out to him whenever they have something on their minds. But he acknowledged that he also needs to do better. After the press conference, Liberal MP Celina Caesar-Chavannes challenged on social media Prime Minister Trudeau's claimed leadership style. She later told The Globe and Mail that Mr. Trudeau "yelled" at her in a recent phone conversation when she told him about her plans not to seek re-election, and in a second in-person interaction, received a "stare down" from him. Ms. Caesar-Chavannes also said that Mr. Trudeau apologized to her both times. The Prime Minister's Office disputed Ms. Caesar-Chavannes' characterization and described it was an "emotional" conversation and said Mr. Trudeau has "deep respect" for the Whitby MP. But the prime minister has acknowledged he made mistakes and wants to do better. He should start by building better relations with his MPs and allow for honest conversations. The closed-door weekly national caucus meetings are supposed to be frank discussions between the leader and Liberal MPs on national political and policy issues. MPs are there to tell their leader about what they're hearing at the doorsteps in their ridings. But some MPs feel Mr. Trudeau is not really interested in their feedback and sometimes they face negative reaction from the leader which has a chilling affect on their interest in providing their honest opinions. As well, they say the senior PMO staffers' presence in national meetings prevents them from speaking freely. In the March 7 press conference, Prime Minister Trudeau said he's reflecting and consulting on how he and his staff have handled the SNC-Lavalin controversy and what changes can be made in his and his staff's dealings with the caucus and cabinet, going forward. The Prime Minister's Office told The Hill Times last week that the consultations will be informal and there will be no public report. On top of his consultations, Mr. Trudeau can follow some of the things that former prime ministers did to have a relationship of trust with their caucus members. For example, Mr. Trudeau should hire a full-time former MP as a caucus liaison. A former MP is more likely to understand an incumbent MP's issues and concerns compared to a young staffer without elected experience. Incumbent MPs should have access to the caucus liaison 24 hours a day if they have anything to discuss. The caucus liaison can also help the prime minister in building a friendly relationship with MPs where both sides can trust each other. The liaison staffer can also arrange luncheons and dinners with Mr. Trudeau and small groups of MPs. MPs can use these opportunities to share any policy or political ideas with the leader. Also, the caucus liaison should be able to reach directly to the prime minister to arrange meetings at the earliest possible opportunity if an MP wants to meet with the leader. Without a strong relationship based on trust and two-way meaningful communications with his caucus, Mr. Trudeau will have a tough time getting through the SNC-Lavalin affair. He needs loyalty of his caucus members, but he also needs to earn it.