Aug
03

TAA_R2_EDIT-CS3

 

In your opinion what are the three most important characteristics of a trustworthy individual? That’s the simple question we are asking this month. Can you spare 30 seconds to respond? Here’s the link:

bit.ly/1LWmNVB

The results of our July Trust Quest in cased you missed it….

linkd.in/1Mc5h08

Thank you so much for weighing in. We will report on the results later this month.

Barbara Brooks Kimmel, Executive Director, Trust Across America-Trust Around the World

Jul
30

TAA_R2_EDIT-CS3

Welcome!

While our monthly roundup is normally a collaborative undertaking of our Trust Alliance, this month we gave our members a well-deserved holiday and instead assembled a handful of Barbara Brooks Kimmel’s most popular articles and interviews of 2015.

Our goal is to provide our readers with  a better appreciation for the importance of embracing trust as an organizational imperative.

Let’s get started!

In this Forbes article some tough organizational trust questions are answered, including:

  • “How can individuals and organizations capitalize on trust?”
  • “Jack Welch recently said that the only thing an executive today should be focused on is trust. Why do you think Mr. Welch have arrived at that conclusion in 2015?”

Our July Trust Quest asked: Which is the greater problem facing today’s society? Is it an unwillingness to trust others or alternatively, that people just aren’t trustworthy enough? Here’s the results of the poll. Our August poll launches on August 1. We hope you will participate.

The terms compliance, ethics and trust are often used synonymously when they shouldn’t be. What’s the difference and how can leaders ensure that trust stands alone? This Culture University article answers those questions.

Our most popular post year-to-date simply asksIs it Too Lonely at the Top for Trust?

And finally, the most downloaded article from our website, and perhaps the key that unlocks the trust door is called “Return on Trust.” It’s a reprint from our quarterly magazine called TRUST!

Enjoy!

Jul
27

TAA_R2_EDIT-CS3

 

How do low-trust leaders respond when faced with a trust breach? Here’s a quick sampling of 10 “one- liners” pulled from the headlines over the past several weeks.

  1. “It was our legal right to do so.”
  2. “I had no hard evidence.”
  3. “Errors are inadvertent and happen.”
  4. “We will increase our compliance monitoring.”
  5. “There was no calculation to mislead people.”
  6. We’re all a bit stunned by the news.
  7. “I mean it when I say we screwed up.”
  8. “No comment at this time.”
  9. “We continue to cooperate with the relevant authorities on pursuing those responsible for this criminal act.”
  10. “I was totally unaware that this was in the works.”

Huh, what and are you kidding?

Why do we continue to read these rehashed headlines after a trust violation and why do leaders use these excuses? Very simply because organizational trust is not regulated; it’s voluntary. And because of this one simple fact, trust is largely ignored in most organizations. It’s not practiced proactively unless leadership places trust high on it’s business agenda. That’s called intentional trust, and it’s very rare. Instead, most leaders wait for the next crisis (which is a “given” in low trust organizations) and then pull an excuse from the list above, usually with the assistance of the legal department.

If ANY leader of ANY organization actually believes that these “one-liners” build long-term trust with stakeholders, please drop a note to barbara@trustacrossamerica.com . I have a bridge I’d like to sell you.

 

Barbara Brooks Kimmel has been the Executive Director of Trust Across America-Trust Around the World  since 2008. The program’s mission is simply to provide tools and assistance to organizations interested in building trust. Barbara runs the world’s largest organizational trust membership program. She is also the editor of the award winning TRUST INC. book series and the Executive Editor of TRUST! Magazine. In 2012 Barbara was named “One of 25 Women Changing the World” by Good Business International.

Barbara is an award-winning communications executive and former consultant to McKinsey who has run her own firm, Next Decade, Inc., that has been unraveling and simplifying complex subjects for over twenty years. She holds a BA in International Affairs from Lafayette College and an MBA from Baruch (City University of NY).

Jul
22

TAA_R2_EDIT-CS3

 

Do trustworthy CEOs share similar profiles?

What about their untrustworthy counterparts?

Since 2010, Trust Across America™ (TAA) has been conducting an annual review to identify The Most Trustworthy Public Companies in America. Over 2000 companies are independently screened through our custom FIDES™ software using our proprietary Framework called FACTS®, ranking the trustworthiness of companies on five primary indicators of trustworthiness: Financial stability, Accounting conservativeness, Corporate governance, Transparency and Sustainability. No internal assessments or surveys are completed and companies do not know they are being analyzed.

This past April we released our fifth year of findings and named our Top Ten Most Trustworthy Public Companies (over 5 years.)

What do the CEOs of these “Top 10″ companies have in common and how do their profiles compare to the “least trustworthy” in our model?

Most Trustworthy Profile:

  • All are men
  • All were born between 1950 and 1960
  • All were promoted from within to CEO
  • Seven of the ten have been the CEO for at least five years (well above the national average CEO tenure)
  • Undergraduate education is diverse and less than half have MBAs

We then took one additional step, reviewing the profiles of the CEOs from the ten LEAST trustworthy companies (with market capitalization over $10 billion) and here’s what we found:

Least Trustworthy Profiles:

  • All are men
  • Born between 1934 and 1967
  • Five of the ten were promoted from within (three of the five became CEO through mergers)
  • Six of the ten have been CEO for over five years
  • Undergraduate education is diverse and one has no college degree

What conclusions, if any, should be drawn from this small study?

Barbara Brooks Kimmel has been the Executive Director of Trust Across America-Trust Around the World  since its founding in 2008. The program’s mission is simply to provide tools and assistance to organizations interested in building trust. Barbara runs the world’s largest organizational trust membership program. She is also the editor of the award winning TRUST INC. book series and the Executive Editor of TRUST! Magazine. In 2012 Barbara was named “One of 25 Women Changing the World” by Good Business International.

Barbara is also an award-winning communications executive and former consultant to McKinsey who has run her own firm, Next Decade, Inc., that has been unraveling and simplifying complex subjects for over twenty years. She holds a BA in International Affairs from Lafayette College and an MBA in Marketing from Baruch (City University of NY).

 

Jul
18

TAA_R2_EDIT-CS3

 

Which is the greater problem facing society? Is it an unwillingness to trust others or alternatively, that people just aren’t trustworthy enough? This is the question we posed in our July Trust Quest and here are the results. Apparently it is an unwillingness to trust others. Do you agree?

Trust QuestT - July 2015 Summary Report copy

Our next Trust Quest poll will launch on August 1 on the home page of the Trust Across America website.

The summer issue of TRUST! Magazine has just been published. If you are interested in the subject of organizational trust, you can read more about the summer issue at this link.

07-15 Trust Magazine-Cover Final

Barbara Brooks Kimmel is the Executive Director of Trust Across America-Trust Around the World whose mission is to help organizations build trust. She runs the world’s largest membership program for those interested in the subject. Barbara is also the editor of the award winning TRUST INC. book series and the Executive Editor of TRUST! Magazine. In 2012 Barbara was named “One of 25 Women Changing the World” by Good Business International.

Our annual poster, 52 Weeks of Activities to Increase Organizational Trust is available to those who would like to support our work by making a small donation.

Did you know we have published 3 books in our award-winning TRUST Inc. series. They are yours when you join our Alliance.

Copyright 2015, Next Decade, Inc.

Jul
08

TAA_R2_EDIT-CS3

 

What happens when a group of openminded trust, ethics and compliance experts meet for lunch to discuss the intersection of the three disciplines?

One of the tasks at hand was to create a visual representation of the functional interaction between compliance, ethics and trust in an organization.

 

CET3

Copyright (c) 2015, Next Decade, Inc.

 

What does this mean?

Compliance: While organizations require compliance as a minimum “rule setting/obeying standard,” compliance does not necessarily have an ethics OR a trust mandate. Compliance is merely the starting point, not the end. In fact, it can be trust’s worst enemy when it is assumed that compliance encompasses trust and ethics. Compliance is regulated while ethics and trust are voluntary. In most companies, this distinction is not made and the C&E Officer is usually an attorney who simply enforces the “laws.” He or she may have no understanding of ethics, let alone trust.

Ethics: The “character” component of trust is ethics, and unlike compliance, it is a personal choice. It’s the individual and organizational value system that must be debated, decided and set in place by the Board of Directors, not the CEO.  A Chief Ethics Officer, not a C&E Officer, is the distiller of these values. He or she need not be an attorney. So what role does trust play? Unfortunately, both individuals and organizations can be “ethical” without being trustworthy because there are two more attributes that must be present for trust to flourish.

Trust: In order for an individual or organization to be trustworthy it must, at a minimum exhibit not only character (ethics) but competence and consistency in all internal and external relationships. “High trust” companies understand the distinction between compliance, ethics and trust. Going beyond compliance and ethics by adding the trust component results in:

  • Less need/emphasis on compliance and it’s oppressive laws and regulations
  • Greater employee satisfaction and lower turnover
  • Faster decision-making and innovation
  • Less risk and fewer crises
  • Better relationships not only with customers but all stakeholders
  • A happier workplace
  • Higher profitability

Companies that understand the distinctions described above and embrace trust as a business imperative are beginning to hire Chief Trust Officers (CTrO), and for good reason(s). They are the “keepers of the golden ticket,” and perhaps the organization’s most valuable employee.

Barbara Brooks Kimmel is the Executive Director of Trust Across America-Trust Around the World whose mission is to help organizations build trust. She runs the world’s largest membership program for those interested in the subject. Barbara is also the editor of the award winning TRUST INC. book series and the Executive Editor of TRUST! Magazine. In 2012 Barbara was named “One of 25 Women Changing the World” by Good Business International.

Our annual poster, 52 Weeks of Activities to Increase Organizational Trust is available to those who would like to support our work by making a small donation.

Did you know we have published 3 books in our award-winning TRUST Inc. series. They are yours when you join our Alliance.

Copyright 2015, Next Decade, Inc.

 

Jul
01

TAA_R2_EDIT-CS3

 

Welcome!

Our monthly roundup is another collaborative undertaking of our Trust Alliance, selected blog posts on a variety of organizational trust topics. The subjects are as diverse as the expertise of our members!

By reviewing these posts, our readers will have a better appreciation for the importance of embracing trust as an organizational imperative.

Let’s get started!

What is the outcome when terms like “brutally honest” are used? Holly Latty-Mann discusses this in Trust and Honest Feedback: Up Close and Personal

Do you trust your employees to tweet about the company? Nan Russell shares some excellent advice in Psychology Today.

Taina Savolainen an academic partner from Finland discusses the role of story-telling in building organizational trust.

Linda Fisher Thornton wonders what our workplaces would be like if every leader cared about others.

My most popular post this month introduces Trust Across America’s VIP Model. Take a look!

And finally, what does your “place” smell like? This is an excellent 8 minute speech by Professor Sumantra Ghoshal at the World Economic Forum. It’s about corporate environments and the faults of management in creating a positive work place. The goal is “trust” and Professor Ghoshal explains why in “The Smell of the Place.” The speech has been accessed almost 85,000 times.

Barbara Brooks Kimmel is the Executive Director of Trust Across America-Trust Around the World whose mission is to help organizations build trust, and runs the world’s largest membership program for those interested in the subject. She is also the editor of the award winning TRUST INC. book series and the Executive Editor of TRUST! Magazine. In 2012 Barbara was named “One of 25 Women Changing the World” by Good Business International.

Our annual poster, 52 Weeks of Activities to Increase Organizational Trust is available to those who would like to support our work by making a small donation.

Did you know we have published 3 books in our award-winning TRUST Inc. series. They are yours when you join our Alliance.

Copyright 2015, Next Decade, Inc.

Jun
27

TAA_R2_EDIT-CS3

 

What can we learn about trust from the great leaders, teachers, writers and philosophers?

JUST ABOUT EVERYTHING

This week we turn our attention to the words of Peter Drucker, an author, educator and management consultant who was hailed by Business Week as the “man who invented management.”  This article pulls together twenty of his most inspiring quotes. Regardless of your role in life- a parent, teacher, business, religious or military leader, the following contain many messages about character, competence and consistency, the key ingredients for building trust.

  1. “To do the most good requires saying no to pressures to stray, and the discipline to stop doing what does not fit.”
  2. “Effective leadership is not about making speeches or being liked; leadership is defined by results not attributes.”
  3. “Whenever you see a successful business, someone once made a courageous decision.”
  4. “Every enterprise requires commitment to common goals and shared values. Without such commitment there is no enterprise; there is only a mob. The enterprise must have simple, clear, and unifying objectives. The mission of the organization has to be clear enough and big enough to provide common vision. The goals that embody it have to be clear, public, and constantly reaffirmed. Management’s first job is to think through, set, and exemplify those objectives, values, and goals.
  5. “Success in the knowledge economy comes to those who know themselves – their strengths, their values, and how they best perform.”
  6. “Rank does not confer privilege or give power. It imposes responsibility.”
  7. “People who don’t take risks generally make about two big mistakes a year. People who do take risks generally make about two big mistakes a year.”
  8. “Leadership is not magnetic personality, that can just as well be a glib tongue. It is not “making friends and influencing people”, that is flattery. Leadership is lifting a person’s vision to higher sights, the raising of a person’s performance to a higher standard, the building of a personality beyond its normal limitations.”
  9. “A person can perform only from strength. One cannot build performance on weakness, let alone on something one cannot do at all.”
  10. “1. What is our mission? 2. Who is our customer? 3. What does the customer value? 4. What are our results? 5. What is our plan?”
  11. “The focus on contribution by itself supplies the four basic requirements of effective human relations: communications; teamwork; self-development; and development of others.”
  12. “Many brilliant people believe that ideas move mountains. But bulldozers move mountains; ideas show where the bulldozers should go to work.”
  13. “Meetings are by definition a concession to deficient organization For one either meets or one works. One cannot do both at the same time.”
  14. “Gentlemen, I take it we are all in complete agreement on the decision here.” Everyone around the table nodded assent. “Then,” continued Mr. Sloan, “I propose we postpone further discussion of this matter until our next meeting to give ourselves time to develop disagreement and perhaps gain some understanding of what the decision is all about.”
  15. “plan, organize, integrate, motivate, and measure.”
  16. “Management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things.”
  17. “If you want something new, you have to stop doing something old”
  18. “The most important thing in communication is to hear what isn’t being said.”
  19. “Efficiency is doing the thing right. Effectiveness is doing the right thing.”
  20. “The three most charismatic leaders in this century inflicted more suffering on the human race than almost any trio in history: Hitler, Stalin, and Mao. What matters is not the leader’s charisma. What matters is the leader’s mission.”

My favorites are #4, #6, #16 and #20. How about yours? 

Want to read more from this series?

We recently highlighted some of the best quotes on building trust from:

Barbara Brooks Kimmel is the Executive Director of Trust Across America-Trust Around the World whose mission is to help organizations build trust. She facilitates the world’s largest membership program for those interested in the subject. Barbara is also the editor of the award winning TRUST INC. book series and the Executive Editor of TRUST! Magazine. In 2012 Barbara was named “One of 25 Women Changing the World” by Good Business International.

Our annual poster, 52 Weeks of Activities to Increase Organizational Trust is available to those who would like to support our work by making a small donation.

Did you know we have published 3 books in our award-winning TRUST Inc. series. They are yours when you join our Alliance.

Copyright 2015, Next Decade, Inc.

 

Jun
24

TAA_R2_EDIT-CS3

 

In most companies trust is taken for granted until a crisis threatens earnings and subsequent shareholder loyalty. And because it’s not regulated, most CEOs ignore the word “trust” completely. Just ask any CEO how trustworthy they think their company is, and depending on the route they took in their ascent through the ranks, these are the responses you will most likely receive:

  • The College Sports Team Captain:  “Trust is an outcome of wins over losses.”
  • The Chief Marketing/Communications Officer: “Trust is gained or lost according to the message we deliver.”
  • The Military Officer: “Trust is a product of strong teams.”
  • The Milton Friedman follower: “Our quarterly earnings are growing so we are trusted by our shareholders.”
  • The Chief Compliance Officer: “If we abide by the regulations, we are trustworthy.”
  • The General Counsel: “If we don’t break any laws, we are trustworthy.”
  • The Chief Financial Officer: “Our level of trust is measured in our income statement and balance sheet.”
  • The Investment Banker: “We benchmark our trust against our competitors.”

If all these definitions are correct, then why are the levels of trust so low, not only in corporate America but globally? The answer is simply, “The definitions are wrong.”

Fortunately some leaders, and their Boards have tossed these “old school” siloed and limited definitions of organizational trust to the curb.  We are beginning to see the emergence of a new “class” of enlightened CEOs who are leading very differently and their companies are thriving.

  • The Values Based Leader: We define trust according to how trustworthy I am viewed as a leader.
  • The Trust Based Leader: We define trust through our leadership and organizational values, and how well we are meeting the needs of all our stakeholders- shareholders, employees, customers, suppliers, community, etc.

Trust begins with leadership that recognizes its value and embraces it as a long-term business strategy. Until leaders at both the Board and CEO level lose their “old school” definition and adopt a new one that works, trust will stagnate. CEOs will continue to extinguish the daily fires by hiring more compliance staff to meet the needs of the ever increasing regulations that are written as a result of low trust and trust violations. Sounds like a never-ending cycle of mistrust … and a short-term strategy at best.

I challenge all CEOs and Boards to lose their old definition of trust and replace it with one that works. Start by becoming a values based leader and trust will follow.

Barbara Brooks Kimmel is the Executive Director of Trust Across America-Trust Around the World whose mission is to help organizations build trust. She also facilitates the world’s largest membership program for those interested in learning more about the subject. Barbara is the editor of the award winning TRUST INC. book series and the Executive Editor of TRUST! Magazine. In 2012 she was named “One of 25 Women Changing the World” by Good Business International.

Our annual poster, 52 Weeks of Activities to Increase Organizational Trust is available to those who would like to support our work by making a small donation.

Did you know we have published 3 books in our award-winning TRUST Inc. series. They are yours when you join our Alliance.

Copyright 2015, Next Decade, Inc.

Jun
20

TAA_R2_EDIT-CS3

 

What can we learn about trust from the great leaders, teachers, writers and philosophers?

JUST ABOUT EVERYTHING

This week, and in recognition of Father’s Day we turn our attention to quotes from fathers, for fathers and about fathers.  Regardless of your role in life- a parent, teacher, business, religious or military leader, the following contain many messages about character, competence and consistency, the key ingredients for building trust.

  1. “Being a role model is the most powerful form of educating…too often fathers neglect it because they get so caught up in making a living they forget to make a life.” John Wooden
  2. “Fathers…it’s vital to exhibit a thoughtful balance between being a tough as nails disciplinarian and compassionate gentle patriarch to our families. Too much of one devastates relationships and too much of the other emasculates our ability to effectively lead. Our wives and children need the security and assurance of knowing that we can be both tough and tender. One side steel…the other side velvet. ~Jason Versey”
  3. “The greatest mark of a father is how he treats his children when no one is looking.” Dan Pearce
  4. “The quality of a father can be seen in the goals, dreams and aspirations he sets not only for himself, but for his family.” Reed Markham
  5. “As fathers, we should have a desire to be active participants in our children’s lives.” Asa Don Brown
  6. “(My father) didn’t tell me how to live; he lived, and let me watch him do it.” Clarence B. Kelland
  7. “I believe that what we become depends on what our fathers teach us at odd moments, when they aren’t trying to teach us. We are formed by little scraps of wisdom.” Umberto Eco
  8. “Dads. Do you not realize that a child is what you tell them they are? That people almost always become what they are labeled? Was whatever your child just did really the “dumbest thing you’ve ever seen somebody do”? Was it really the “most ridiculous thing they ever could have done”? Do you really believe that your child is an idiot? Because she now does. Think about that. Because you said it, she now believes it. Bravo.”  Dan Pearce
  9. “His client needs him, he says. Needs him? But isn’t he needed at home?” Beth Kephart
  10. “The strength of a man is in his character. A strong man is great man of wisdom who understands, his top priority is to his family.”  Ellen J. Barrier
  11. “As a father, we need to actively listen.”  Asa Don Brown
  12. “It has been said that as goes the family, so goes the world. It can also be said that as goes the father, so goes the family.”  Voddie T. Baucham Jr.
  13. “My dad kept giving me “love pats.” Love pats are soft punches of encouragement that are administered on the knee, shoulder, and arm.”  Stephen Chbosky
  14. “My father gave me the greatest gift anyone could give another person, he believed in me.” Jim Valvano
  15. “One father is more than 100 schoolmasters.” George Herbert
  16. “There’s no better cure for the fear of taking after one’s father, than not to know who he is.”  Andre Gide
  17. “Spiritual fathers have influence over the lives of individuals. Patriarchs have influence over families. The devil has been able to destroy families because there is a lack of spiritual fathers and patriarchs.”  Sherry K. White
  18. “There is no teacher equal to mother and there’s nothing more contagious than the dignity of a father.”  Amit Ray
  19. “A father acts on behalf of his children by working, providing, intervening, struggling, and suffering for them. In so doing, he really stands in their place. He is not an isolated individual, but incorporates the selves of several people in his own self. Every attempt to live as if he were alone is a denial of the fact that he is actually responsible. He cannot escape the responsibility, which is his because he is a father. This reality refutes the fictitious notion that the isolated individual is the agent of all ethical behavior. It is not the isolated individual but the responsible person who is the proper agent to be considered in ethical reflection.”  Dietrich Bonhoeffer
  20. “Listen, there is no way any true man is going to let children live around him in his home and not discipline and teach, fight and mold them until they know all he knows. His goal is to make them better than he is. Being their friend is a distant second to this.”  Victor Devlin

Did your father say or do something that encouraged you to lead with trust? Please share your story with us.

Want to read more from this series?

We recently highlighted some of the best quotes on building trust from:

Barbara Brooks Kimmel is the Executive Director of Trust Across America-Trust Around the World whose mission is to help organizations build trust, and runs the world’s largest membership program for those interested in the subject. She is also the editor of the award winning TRUST INC. book series and the Executive Editor of TRUST! Magazine. In 2012 Barbara was named “One of 25 Women Changing the World” by Good Business International.

Our annual poster, 52 Weeks of Activities to Increase Organizational Trust is available to those who would like to support our work by making a small donation.

Did you know we have published 3 books in our award-winning TRUST Inc. series. They are yours when you join our Alliance.

Copyright 2015, Next Decade, Inc.