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The real act of discovery consists not in finding new lands but in seeing with new eyes. Marcel Proust

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Cultivate a capital of trust

Cultivate a capital of trust

Being trustworthy is not enough to inspire trust. To maintain good relationships, companies must continuously cultivate their trust capital.


Trust is a major issue for both leaders and organizations. It appears to be an indispensable response to discontinuity caused by increasingly frequent disruptive events, such as financial crises, lethal accidents, stock market crashes, major market shifts, etc. Indeed, trust is the glue that binds employees, shareholders, customers and other company stakeholders to the organization by ensuring their loyalty and support when the going gets tough.

Yet trust is not easy to build and maintain. For example, 71 percent of participants in a 2005 Alsop study ranked the reputation of U.S. corporations as "bad" or "very bad." According to the findings of a 2006 World Economic Forum survey, people across the globe are more likely to be wary rather than trustful of the average multinational.

This dearth of trust, which is also observed between employees and management, is not unavoidable, although more than goodwill is needed to address this issue. Indeed, it is possible to be trustworthy and still not be trusted. Trustworthiness is essential, of course, but applying the following three principles is equally important:

– Communicate carefully; people won’t trust you just because you are sincere!

– Ensure that your organization’s words and actions are consistent.

– Use social networks to maintain your capital of trust.

Synopsis n.174b