Ruth Owen, Presenter: Trust is the life blood of any business, it always has been. The global financial crisis and the events that followed shook people’s trust in organisations of all types. And it triggered a widespread debate that highlighted the importance of trust and the consequences when trust is undermined.
At PwC, we have been shining a light on the issue of trust and the key role it plays in society for more than 12 years. Recently we’ve held a series of debates and events to find out what tangible actions people think different businesses need to take to build trust in society, and we’ve gathered opinions from a range of different communities including members of the public, students, business leaders, and our own employees. Here’s a snapshot of what they told us.
Citizens Jury vox pops in vision:
#1: Being transparent, open, listening to what the public has to say and actually trusting the public.
#2: Putting customers first, listen to their feedback, and giving feedback to the customers
#3: I think a trustworthy business will think more about their place in society and the environment than their profit
Student Challenge vox pops on screen text:
What tangible actions can businesses take to build trust in society?
#1: Show customers how you price your products
#2: Conduct an external assessment of a businesses’ trustworthiness
#3: Stick to promises made to customers
Building public trust jury:
Charles Bowman in vision: This needs to be a movement, and I’m keen to get businesses in society to engage with this in whatever form and whatever way we can.
Lisa Basford: For me I think its 100% about engaging employees. Trust is built on human relationships and unless your employees believe in the values and mission of the business trust will never ever be developed.
PwC Internal debates, on screen text:
#1: Encourage staff to behave as individuals
#2: Proactively engage with stakeholders
#3: Think long term and think ethically
Mary Monfries in vision: There are two really important elements: one, having a really clear sense of purpose and values that then underpins decision making right through the organisation. And secondly, communication internally and externally.
Anton Colella in vision: We talk about tone at the top, an example that leaders set the organisation. What’s becoming very clear that every member of an organisation has a personal responsibility to do the right thing.
Dame Julia Cleverdon in vision: The two most important stakeholders to concentrate on. One is customers, if you delight customers, listen to customers, do what customers want and need and do it before they expect it you’ll always be ahead of the game. And the other is employees. Employees are the greatest advocates or the greatest attractors of your business.
Ian Powell, in vision: I think it’s down to behaviours. Any strategy to rebuild trust comes from thousands and thousands of little interactions.
Ruth Owen, VO: today we all live and work in a fast-changing world where societies are being reshaped and businesses disrupted by a range of powerful global trends.
Ruth Owen in vision: So trust really is a vital foundation for any businesses long term survival and success. And that means it’s in all our interests to help shape a new relationship between business and the wider society, and to restore trust to the heart of the business world.