Archive

Posts Tagged ‘charles green’

Mar
31

This week we are providing a quarterly wrap up of our Trust Insights series. Many of the world’s leading trust scholars and practitioners are collaborating on this project to bring you actionable insights that you can use to elevate trust at both the team and organizational level.

 

 

Simply click on the blue link in the list below to read more.

 

Trust Insights Week #1: Stephen M.R. Covey
Trust is both earned and given. January 7, 2020
Trust Insights Week #2: David Reiling
Developing trust starts in the C-Suite. January 14, 2020
Trust Insights Week #3: Margaret Heffernan
Trust is always and only about what you DO; nothing else matters. January 21, 2020
Trust Insights Week #4: Special Announcement
2020 Top Thought Leaders. January 28, 2020
Trust Insights Week #5: Charles H. Green
Trust is what happens when a risk-taking trustor meets a virtuous trustee. February 4, 2020
Trust Insights Week #6: Walt Rakowich
Real leadership starts by building trust; without trust, you have no platform from which to build positive influence with others. February 11, 2020
Trust Insights Week #7: Bob Vanourek
Three trust questions are the best way to deal with the ethical dilemmas we face. February 18, 2020
Trust Insights Week #8: Barbara Brooks Kimmel
The benefits of high trust are too numerous for leaders to ignore. February 25, 2020
Trust Insights Week #9: Bob Whipple
The absence of fear is the incubator of trust. March 3 , 2020
Trust Insights Week #10: Doug Conant
Building trust doesn’t have to be overwhelming… March 10, 2020
Trust Insights Week #11: Lea Brovedani
It is easier to trust someone and for others to trust you if there is genuine care… March 17, 2020
Trust Insights Week #12: Sean Flaherty
Developing trust starts with building a culture that values trust. March 24, 2020

 

 

Before you leave, Tap Into Trust and complete our 1 minute/1 question quiz. Find out how the level of trust in your workplace compares to hundreds of others. 

Have you reviewed how our workshops are helping teams and organizations just like yours elevate trust? Schedule an ONLINE webinar today.

Did you miss our previous 2020 Trust Insights? Access them at this link.

Contact us for more information on elevating trust on your team or in your organization or email me directly: barbara@trustacrossamerica.com

Copyright 2020, Next Decade, Inc.

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Feb
04

Charlie, thank you for participating in our 2020 Trust Insights series. What is your trust insight?

“Trust” is what happens when a risk-taking trustor meets a virtuous trustee.” Charles H. Green, Trusted Advisor Associates

(The definition is surprisingly important, because it is rarely followed in practice.)

 

Can you expand a bit on this important insight?

Much talk about ’trust’ is abstract and not practically useful. Change in trust happens only when either someone becomes more willing to trust, or someone else becomes more trustworthy. 

We intuitively use personal trust as the paradigm – the strongest form of trust. We describe people as being trustworthy or not – a set of personal virtues, if you will. For example, using the Trust Equation, it breaks down into Credibility, Reliability, and Intimacy: all divided by Self-orientation. A trustworthy person exemplifies these virtues in all their interactions.

The trustor, by contrast, is the one who initiates the trust interaction. They, by definition are taking a risk, putting themselves willfully in the way of some kind of harm through the potentially untrustworthy behavior of the trustee. 

The business world is much enamored of ‘measuring’ things; but when it comes to trust, it is largely a fool’s errand. Measuring ’trust’ per se is elusive: most measurements are, and should be, actually metrics of the trustor’s propensity to risk, or of the trustees level of virtuousness. 

 

Can you provide a real life example of a trust “challenge” where your insight has been effectively applied.

One headline from Edelman PR’s annual Trust Barometer is “trust in social media is down.” Substitute ‘brands,’ ‘banking,’ ‘politics,’ and a host of others, and you’ll find similar headlines. But what do such sentences actually mean? Take banking, for example:
  • Does such a headline mean that banking has become less trustworthy? 
  • Or does it mean that people have become less trusting of banks in general?
In the case of Wells Fargo, you can make a good case that the problem was specific to the firm – rampant cases of untrustworthy behavior. Wells Fargo showed itself to be unworthy of trust. 
But take the case of violent crime: it is down, verifiably, over two decades in the US. At the same time, just as verifiably, fear of violent crime is up. That is a problem of perception on the part of would-be trusters. 
If you are interested in improving trust, you must define the problem: does it lie in the trustworthiness of specific would-be trustees? Or does it lie in excessive risk-avoidance on the part of would-be trustors?
Focusing on ’trust’ itself masks the practical question: is it a problem of trusting, or of trustworthiness. 

 

Charlie, generally, do you think the global “trust” climate is improving or worsening? What actions are making it better or worse?

There is plenty of data – some flawed, but some very good – that suggest we are in a period of declining trust. It is tempting to ascribe this to political polarization, tribalism, and nationalism. But I think there is a bigger threat. 
The larger problem is that we have come to de-emphasize the inherently personal nature of trust. The strongest form of trust is personal, not institutional. Yet much of the public dialogue is about institutional trust: and much of the discussion about how to improve trust is also about institutional or structural fixes to trust. 
Factors driving down the focus on personal trust include:
  • A deep-seated business preference for metrics and quantification, including on things that are frankly quite non-measurable
  • A fascination with ’scientific’ explanations of trust, including many neuroscientists and Big Data, which have the effect of downgrading traditional, and still valuable, other approaches to the subject 
  • The de-humanization that comes out of most participation in social media
  • The de-humanization that comes out of the very nature of ‘online’ social media participation as a substitute for direct human conduct

 

Many claim we have a crisis of trust. Do you agree?

 

Yes. 

 

Charlie, how has your membership in our Trust Alliance benefitted you professionally?

Invaluable direct contact with other fellow-travelers interested in the exploration of this very rich topic. 

 

Charlie, thank you so much for your time and more importantly for your commitment to elevating organizational trust. What would you like our audience to know about you?

 

Charles H. Green is an author, speaker and world expert on trust-based relationships and sales in complex businesses. Founder and CEO of Trusted Advisor Associates, he is author of Trust-based Selling, and co-author of The Trusted Advisor and the Trusted Advisor Fieldbook.  He has worked with a wide range of industries and functions globally. Charles spent 20 years in management consulting. He majored in philosophy (Columbia), and has an MBA (Harvard).

A widely sought-after speaker, he has published articles in Harvard Business Review, Directorship Magazine, Management Consulting News, CPA Journal, American Lawyer, Investments and Wealth Monitor, and Commercial Lending Review.

And while you are here, Tap Into Trust and complete our 1 minute/1 question quiz. Find out how the level of trust in your workplace compares to hundreds of others.

Did you miss our previous 2020 insights? Access them at this link.

 

Contact us for more information on elevating trust on your team or in your organization.

Copyright 2020, Next Decade, Inc.

 

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Jan
24

This is a timely article about what trust is and what it isn’t! 

www.fcpablog.com/blog/2019/1/24/five-stupid-ideas-about-trust-in-business.html

Barbara Brooks Kimmel, pictured above left, is the CEO and Cofounder of Trust Across America-Trust Around the World whose mission is to help organizations build trust. She also runs the world’s largest global Trust Alliance and is the editor of the award-winning TRUST INC. book series. In 2017 she was named a Fellow of the Governance & Accountability Institute, and in 2012 she was recognized as one of “25 Women who are Changing the World” by Good Business International.

Charles H. Green, above right, is an author, speaker and world expert on trust-based relationships and sales in complex businesses. Founder and CEO of Trusted Advisor Associates, he is author of Trust-based Selling, and co-author of The Trusted Advisor and the Trusted Advisor Fieldbook. He majored in philosophy (Columbia), and has an MBA (Harvard). He has authored articles in Harvard Business Review, Directorship Magazine, Management Consulting News, CPA Journal, American Lawyer, Investments and Wealth Monitor, and Commercial Lending Review.

 

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Jan
06

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There is no doubt that trust is broken in most organizations. If you doubt the validity of this statement, here’s a quick test.

  1. Do you look forward to getting up and going to work in the morning? Now ask the person sitting next to you the same question.
  2. What was the level of employee turnover in your organization in 2014?
  3. Do you like your boss, or does he like himself more? When was the last time he/she spoke TO you instead of AT you?
  4. Has trust as a “business imperative” ever been discussed at a staff meeting?
  5. Can you list the three most important values in your organization?

Get the picture? The good news…. if leadership hasn’t woken up to the value of trust, appoint yourself as the Chief Trust Officer today, start instilling some trust in your organization, and chances are, you will like your job more by the end of 2015. Your colleagues will thank you and maybe your boss will wake up too! It’s a win/win for all.

Late last year we published the 3rd book in our award-winning TRUST Inc. series. It’s called TRUST Inc. 52 Weeks of Activities and Inspirations to Build Workplace Trust . We also published a year-end companion poster with 52 ways to increase organizational trust, as recommended by some of the world’s leading experts, and members of our Trust Alliance.

The first activity can be completed in less than one hour. It’s called “Listening for Leaders” and was written by Charles H. Green, one of the world’s foremost authorities on trust-based relationships.

This is a brief introduction to the activity:

Objective: Concretely demonstrate to leaders a way of interacting with others that increases influence through empathetic listening.

Requirements: 3 persons, each with a particular “difficult client/colleague” situation.

30 – 40 minutes elapsed time.

Can be done in multiples of three persons, with a strong facilitator

Process overview: The exercise is done in three iterations. Each of the three gets a chance to role-play:

Person A. a difficult client of their own

Person B. an advisor or follower of the difficult client/colleague

Person C. an observer

Each iteration proceeds as:

a. 60 seconds for the “client/colleague” person to describe the situation – out of role character

b. 4 minutes for the role-play – in character

c. 3 minutes debrief, led by the observer

This activity also includes Notes to Facilitators, Debrief Instructions & a Wrap Up.

Interesting idea?  It’s the first of 52. Get the book, print the poster and hang it on your wall. Start your new career as the Chief Trust Officer in your organization today. There’s no reason to wait for the boss to do it. I dare you!

If you need help along the way, visit our website for free resources on building organizational trust. We can even recommend a local expert to visit and share their expertise.

Barbara Brooks Kimmel is the Executive Director of Trust Across America-Trust Around the World whose mission is to help organizations build trust. 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.

Copyright 2015, Next Decade, Inc.

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Nov
20
TrustGiving 2014 Logo-Final

 

Welcome to TRUSTGiving 2014, our first annual weeklong trust awareness campaign.  Join the Alliance of Trustworthy Business Experts as our members help our readers navigate the complexities of trust. We will be blogging (several times a day) and posting on Twitter #TrustGiving2014.

Charles H. Green believes that listening is an important component in building trust.

Listening for Leaders

(an excerpt from our third book Trust Inc., 52 Weeks of Activities & Inspirations for Building Workplace Trust out at the end of November)

“Listening” is a core skill in nearly every corporate training department’s toolkit. Trainers, consultants, coaches, sales managers and personal development gurus all sing the praises of doing a better job of listening. And, it makes good common sense as well.

However, the “listening” that is almost always taught is not the listening that is critical to leaders.

The usual meaning of “listening” in business is about improving the efficiency and effectiveness with which the listener extracts information from the client or speaker. Again, this makes good sense. If we want to serve our customers, make the sale, or solve others’ problems, then it’s certainly necessary that we understand all that we can about how they see the problem, the issues. It’s a cognitive aim. The purpose of this kind of listening is served once the problem has been identified and solved.

Indeed, listening-to-extract-information is a necessary tool for helping serve others.

But it is far from sufficient; and it is especially insufficient when it comes to leadership. For that, we need a different form of listening – call it listening for empathy, or listening for validation. The purpose of this kind of listening is not cognitive information extraction: it is about making the speaker, the client, feel understood.

All human beings desire to be understood by others; if we don’t get it, we feel incomplete, un-heard, occasionally resentful and usually less-than-fully cooperative. But if we do get that feeling from the listener, things change. We are validated. We want to cooperate. We desire to reciprocate, and listen to what the listener has to say.

Leaders, above all, need to have their “followers” listen to what they have to say. The best way to get that job done is to listen first – not for problem extraction, but for validation. To be listened to as a leader, first learn to listen.

Charles H. Green is an author, speaker and world expert on trust-based relationships and sales in complex businesses. Founder and CEO of Trusted Advisor Associates, he is co-author of the classic The Trusted Advisor and its practical follow-up, The Trusted Advisor Fieldbook, and author of Trust-based Selling.

Barbara Brooks Kimmel is the Executive Director of Trust Across America-Trust Around the World whose mission is to help organizations build trust. 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.

Copyright 2014, Next Decade, Inc.

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Sep
15

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“One can’t assume that trust accrues automatically through the mere passage of time. It grows through incremental steps and deliberate actions.” Charles H. Green, Trusted Advisor Associates

This quote will appear on the cover of the third book in our award-winning TRUST INC. series. The book, TRUST INC., 52 Weeks of Activities and Inspirations for Building Workplace Trust will be published in November 2014 as an inspirational holiday gift.

 

Stephen M.R. Covey speaks frequently about the 5 Waves (Incremental Steps) of Trust:

WAVE 1: Self Trust (personal credibility)

WAVE 2: Relationship Trust (behavior with others)

WAVE 3: Stakeholder Trust (alignment with internal stakeholders)

WAVE 4: Market Trust (external reputation)

WAVE 5: Societal Trust ( global citizenship- social consciousness, corporate citizenship, and corporate social responsibility.)

Organizations cannot effectively build Wave 5 until the first 4 are constructed. Imagine waking up in the morning and putting your shoes on first. Yet that’s exactly what many organizations have done.

Said another way, building organizational trust cannot be accomplished via an a-la- carte menu. Choosing to start building trust at Wave 4 or 5, with the intent of using it as a short-term promotional or communications tool, rather than a long-term, ground up, incremental trust strategy is a bad choice. Planning and executing a corporate citizenship or corporate social responsibility program without first mastering self trust, relationship trust, stakeholder trust and market trust eventually backfires. And when the crisis strikes, the weak trust foundation crumbles. We see evidence of this almost daily. Some of the biggest names in CSR also happen to be some of the greatest trust & ethics violators. Just pick up the newspaper on any given day. In this age of increasing transparency, these organizations are fooling no one but themselves.

So my advice today to all organizations, but particularly corporate America, get dressed before you put on your shoes.

Barbara Brooks Kimmel is the Executive Director of Trust Across America-Trust Around the World whose mission is to help organizations build trust. She is also the editor of the award winning TRUST INC. book series. In 2012 Barbara was named “One of 25 Women Changing the World” by Good Business International.

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                                                                                                  Coming Soon!

Should you wish to communicate directly with Barbara, drop her a note at Barbara@trustacrossamerica.com

Copyright © 2014, Next Decade, Inc.

 

 

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Sep
05

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Ask most Americans which companies they trust and the same names will surface: Apple, Google, Amazon, and maybe even Walmart.

But when pressed as to why, the answer is usually something like this:

  • I trust Apple because they have innovative products.
  • I trust Google because their search feature is easy to use.
  • I trust Amazon to deliver my packages very quickly.
  • I trust Walmart to have the lowest prices.

So does this mean these companies should be trusted? Sounds more to me like we are talking about customer loyalty or brand loyalty and not so much about trust.

In fact, many would argue that these four are far from trustworthy.  Just ask Apple’s factory workers, Google’s privacy critics, Amazon’s publishers or Walmart’s suppliers what they think.

So let’s not generalize the word “trust.” If we are going to talk about it, we need to clarify what we really mean!

Earlier today I read the following article about how IBM can help Apple with its trust issues. It sheds a bit more light on the confusion between brand loyalty and trust.

And my friend Charlie Green recently wrote this blog post called If Trust Is So Far Down, How Come– which confirms the need to use the correct terminology.

What do you think? Do we have a definitional issue, and if so, how do we overcome it?

Barbara Brooks Kimmel is the Executive Director of Trust Across America-Trust Around the World whose mission is to help organizations build trust. She is also the editor of the award winning TRUST INC. book series. In 2012 Barbara was named “One of 25 Women Changing the World” by Good Business International.

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Should you wish to communicate directly with Barbara, drop her a note at Barbara@trustacrossamerica.com

Copyright © 2014, Next Decade, Inc.

 

 

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Aug
30

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Late last year Trust Across America-Trust Around the World  published the first in a planned series of award-winning books.  TRUST INC., Strategies for Building Your Company’s Most Valuable Asset brings together the wisdom of 32 experts. Six months later we released our second book, Trust Inc. A Guide for Boards & C-SuitesIn this book, sixty experts have joined forces to offer 100 strategies.

Throughout the month of August, we will be featuring 31 essays from our second book. Each stands alone as an excellent resource in guiding Boards and C-Suites on driving a trust agenda at the highest level in the organization, and provides tools for those who choose to implement trust-building programs in their organization.

This thirtieth essay brings advice from Charles H. Green, an author, speaker and world expert on trust-based relationships and sales in complex businesses. Founder and CEO of Trusted Advisor Associateshe is co-author of the classic The Trusted Advisor and its practical follow-up, The Trusted Advisor Fieldbookand author of Trust-based SellingCharles works with complex organizations to improve trust in sales, internal trust between organizations, and trusted advisor relationships with external clients and customers. He is also a 2014 Top Thought Leader in Trustworthy Business , a member of the Alliance of Trustworthy Business Experts , and serves on Trust Across America’s Steering Committee.

Leading for Trust: Let’s Get Real

Forget incentives, metrics and recognition programs. This is trust you’re talking about – you don’t get there by sprinkling cheese to encourage mice to get through a maze, or by checking boxes for legal compliance.

There is only one thing that will build trust into your organization’s DNA, and there are four steps to get you there. That thing is values based leadership. The steps are:

  1. Articulate precisely the several trust-related values you will insist on
  2. Connect frequently the values to specific instances where they should be applied
  3. Role-model yourself those values wherever possible
  4. Sanction or fire those who violate the values of the organization.

Why is values-based leadership so critical to establishing organizational trust? Because trust itself is a value. We don’t trust those who just mechanically execute behaviors. We don’t trust those who just see trust as a hook to make money. And we don’t trust those who are motivated by extrinsic rewards.

We trust those who are personally trustworthy, and who have the courage and the judgment to trust us in turn. We trust those for whom trust is a value, not a means to an end. And paradoxically, those people end up achieving more ends anyway.

 

I hope you have enjoyed this next sneak peak into our second book. If this brief look behind the door has been helpful, follow this link to order both of our books online.

And for those who want to catch up on the series, a quick reference on what’s been covered so far this month:

August 1: There’s a Reason Why We Call Them Trustees explains why being an “absentee landlord” doesn’t work.

August 2: Kill the Evening Before Dinner and take a small group of front line employees to dinner instead.

August 3: In Head of Business- Hope for the World we introduce the Winston “V” Model.

August 4: Reputation vs. Trust and why leaders should care more about the latter.

August 5: C-Suite Must Speak With a V.O.I.C.E. of Trust, a new communications model.

August 6: It Ain’t What You Do (It’s the Way You Do It) discusses an organization’s core values and traits.

August 7: Superficial CEOs and Their Boards talks about the fiduciary responsibility of board members.

August 8: Headline: Be the Leaders Others Will Follow we learn about consistency between actions and words.

August 9: Towards a Mindset for Corporate Responsibility requiring a shift in mindset on the part of boards.

August 10: Warning: Don’t Drown in the Slogan Swamp explores the (mis)use of slogans in corporate America.

August 11: Trust in the Boardroom in creating competitive advantage.

August 12: Three Ways to Build Trust  and organization that are blind to the dialogue.

August 13: Lead from the Front explains why it’s important to remove the filters between leaders and employees.

August 14: Building Trust For Boards & C-Suites and why published scientific evidence is important.

August 15: (Trust) Communication & the Hiring Process discusses engaging employees in the decision.

August 16: CEO Tip: Trust Your Board as Your Ally emphasizes the importance of trusting partnerships.

August 17: The Culture is the Secret Sauce that must bubble down from the Boardroom to the Mailroom.

August 18: Trust & Strategy Thinking reminds us that it is hard to trust when you cannot relate.

August 19: Be Proactive About Trust & Integrity: just handling problems as they arise is not enough.

August 20: Trust Traps reminds us to ask the tough questions.

August 21: Trust Danger Signs and the need for synergy between the Board and Senior Managers.

August 22: Trust & Public Rewards reminds us to publicly acknowledge and reward staff.

August 23: The Cost of Mistrust and 8 ways to develop it.

August 24: Forward-Thinking Boards Build Trust and will commit to lighthouse leadership and employee engagement.

August 25: When Trust Breaks Down: 5 Steps You Can Take to rebuild it.

August 26: The Key To Trust in the C-Suite is safety, but how do we create it?

August 27: Lead With Integrity & Character reminds us to start with integrity.

August 28: Trust is Built Upon Shadows and you can cast your shadow and light over your team.

August 29: Boards in Crisis- Where Trust is Forged & Broken provides advice for managing crises proactively.

Barbara Brooks Kimmel is the Executive Director of Trust Across America-Trust Around the World whose mission is to help organizations build trust. She is also the editor of the award winning TRUST INC. book series. In 2012 Barbara was named “One of 25 Women Changing the World” by Good Business International.

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Should you wish to communicate directly with Barbara, drop her a note at Barbara@trustacrossamerica.com

Copyright © 2014, Next Decade, Inc.

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Jul
24

 

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I struggled earlier to find a topic for today’s blog post, and then one was literally dropped right at my feet.

My friend Charlie Green likes to say  “I trust my dog with my life, but not so much with my ham sandwich.”

Several years ago we rescued this silly guy from Pennsylvania where he spent most of his puppy days running free on a farm without much supervision or training. He’s a happy dog and very loyal to my husband in every way but one. He loves to steal his shoes. And sometimes…well,  he eats them. And each time this happens, my husband blames the dog. In truth, he’s been given so many opportunities to eat shoes that, at this point, the dog thinks it’s a game and an okay response when he finds them laying around the house.

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As we all know, trust is a pretty complex subject and there are different types of trust. Some are based on competence, others on honesty. Many are situational. For example:

  • You might trust Target to have the best selection, but not with your credit card information.
  • You might trust your doctor to manage your health but not necessarily to manage your investment portfolio.
  • You might trust your mother to keep a secret but not to cook a gourmet meal.
  • And finally, you might trust your dog with your life, but not with your shoes 🙂

What are some other examples of situational trust? Leave a comment.

Barbara Brooks Kimmel is the Executive Director of Trust Across America-Trust Around the World whose mission is to help organizations build trust. She is also the editor of the award winning TRUST INC. book series. In 2012 Barbara was named “One of 25 Women Changing the World” by Good Business International.

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If you would like to communicate directly with Barbara, drop her a note at Barbara@trustacrossamerica.com

Copyright © 2014, Next Decade, Inc.

 

 

 

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Jul
17

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Late last year Trust Across America-Trust Around the World  published the first in a planned series of award-winning books. The book, TRUST INC. Strategies for Building Your Company’s Most Valuable Asset brings together the wisdom of 32 experts and is divided into six chapters:

  1. Why Trust Matters
  2. Trust in Practice
  3. Trustworthy Leadership
  4. Building Trustworthy Teams
  5. Restoring Trust
  6. The Future of Trust

For the next six days, our blog will extract highlights from each chapter. Each one can serve as an excellent resource in helping leaders understand why trust matters, and provide tools for those who choose to implement trust building programs in their organization. We know our readers love lists. Today’s blog contains five.

Charles H. Green & Barbara Brooks Kimmel discuss “Trustworthiness in Action” and offer a “Top Ten List” of how companies can increase trustworthiness.

#1 Trustworthy leadership – Very simply, a culture of trust cannot exist with an untrustworthy leader. 

#2 Transformation – Productivity and execution begin when the CEO creates a set of values and goals that are shared, accepted and adopted by all stakeholders. 

#3Tools – There are many trust tools CEOs can use to build trust with their internal and external stakeholders. These run the gamut from metrics and assessments to online surveys. 

#4 Treatment– The Golden Rule says to “treat others the way you want to be treated.” This certainly holds true for trust. 

#5 Teamwork – Teamwork leads to better decisions and better outcomes. Teams create trust, and trust creates teams.

#6 Talk – Your stakeholders need to know what steps you are taking to build a trustworthy organization. Quarterly numbers are no longer the be all and end all. 

#7 Truth – Truth-telling is at the core of trust. Any CEO who wants to build a trustworthy organization must have an extremely comfortable relationship with the truth. 

#8 Time – Building a culture of trustworthy business does not happen overnight. It takes time, maybe even years – but not decades. 

#9 Transparency – Merriam Webster defines “transparent” as visibility or accessibility of information, especially with business practices. Any CEO who thinks he or she can still hide behind a veil of secrecy need only spend a few minutes on social media reading what their stakeholders are saying. 

#10 Thoughtful – Not all stakeholders need to know the company’s trade secrets, or what the CEO had for dinner. But if your company is serious about increasing trustworthiness, consider engaging all your stakeholders in rich, thoughtful conversations. 

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In “What Does a Trustworthy Company Look Like” Peter Firestein addresses how you know a trustworthy company when you see one.

By far the best assessment of whether a company is worthy of trust lies in an answer to the question: “Who trusts it?”

  • A trusted company’s shares trade at a premium to its competitors’ based on investors’ expectations of strong performance in the future. This expectation, itself, is a matter of belief in customers’ trust in its products, lenders’ trust in its judgment, and regulators’ trust in its practices.
  • When unwanted events occur, a trusted company receives the benefit of the doubt until the facts can be established. It is not assumed to be in the wrong.
  • A trusted company attracts the best available employees, helping to ensure that it will continue to hold the trust of stakeholders into the next generation.
  • A trusted company’s practices and strategies are adopted by other companies wishing to emulate its success. Those strategies enter the curricula of business schools to be studied and adapted.
  • Concentration on the continued worthiness of a trusted company is spread evenly across all levels of the company’s hierarchy. Maintaining and strengthening trust in the company is a career-long preoccupation of virtually everyone who works there.

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In “Making Your Values Real to Enable Trust” Jeffrey Thomson discusses two ways to make trust tangible:

How do you make your organizational values real and foundational to building trust, organizational health, and creating great business outcomes? Two very simple suggestions:

  1. The CEO, not a committee or consultant, must set the core values.  Why? Tone at the top.  Genuine, authentic and sustained exemplary behaviors are required and should be expected from the leader and the leadership team. 
  2. Make the effort to inculcate the core values into on-going performance reviews and appraisal processes to drive regular, often tough, conversations about the behaviors (the “how”) that lead to the accomplishments (the “what”).  

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In “Choosing Candor the Language of Trust” Laura Rittenhouse discusses three levels of CEO Candor.

Just Talk:  AMD 2011 Shareholder Letter Introduction

AMD enters 2012 firmly focused on becoming a solid execution engine, while positioning ourselves to take advantage of growth opportunities driven by a fundamental shift in the computing ecosystem. 

Real Talk:  Lockheed Martin 2011 Shareholder Letter Introduction

This is a milestone year for Lockheed Martin: our 100th anniversary. Our company’s success over the past century is due to the exceptional character and ingenuity of the hundreds of thousands of people who have walked through the doors of our heritage companies. As this remarkable enterprise begins its second century, we and our customers face unprecedented global security challenges and an uncertain economic environment.

Transforming Talk:  Eaton Corporation 2011 Shareholder Letter Introduction

In 1911, young entrepreneur Joseph Oriel Eaton staked his future on a transformational axle for the fledgling U.S. trucking industry. He bet upon a megatrend — that the transportation industry would become a hallmark of American industry and our economy. And he was right.

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And finally Robert & Gregg Vanourek address how “Stewards Build Trust” and  provide a partial list of trust busters.

Trust is complex. Many behaviors can undermine trust. Below is a partial list of “trust busters”:

  1. Abusive behavior
  2. Accountability lacking
  3. Appreciation lacking
  4. Arbitrary use of power
  5. Blaming
  6. Commitments not met
  7. Communication poor or secretive
  8. Compensation plans encourage inappropriate behavior
  9. Controls/processes lacking or excessive
  10. Corner cutting to get results

I hope you have enjoyed this sneak peak into the trust treasures contained in our book. Did I mention that it has won both a Nautilus Business Book and Eric Hoffer Grand Business Prize Award? Tomorrow I’ll pull some similar gems from Trust in Practice. Check back with us soon.

If you have enjoyed this brief look behind the door, follow this link to order the book online.

Barbara Brooks Kimmel is the Executive Director of Trust Across America-Trust Around the World whose mission is to help organizations build trust. She is also the editor of the award winning TRUST INC. book series. In 2012 Barbara was named “One of 25 Women Changing the World” by Good Business International.

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If you would like to communicate directly with Barbara, drop her a note at Barbara@trustacrossamerica.com

Copyright © 2014, Next Decade, Inc.

 

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