Corporate culture is currently a big topic. Changing corporate culture, lifting culture to a new level, and ensuring staff are engaged in the culture of an organisation.
Before we can change a culture, we must think about what we need to create this shift. Strategy, funding, Change Managers, tools and resources are all great. There is one thing that, no matter how much you have of these, can make or break the shift in culture – trust. You won’t believe or accept change if you don’t trust the source.
For those working in corporate ethics or who thinks about how to foster trust in an organisation, the Edelman Trust Barometer is a resource. The 2019 report is a must-read. This report surveyed 33,000 people in 27 countries between October 19 and November 16, 2018.
A glance at the results
The positive news is that trust in business globally continues to increase. While the general population’s trust has risen 3% to 56%, this is considered to be a neutral result. Informed public, which are those who are 25-64 years old, university-educated, in top 25% of household income per age group in each market, and report significant media consumption and engagement in business news and public policy, also rose by 4% to 68%. This results in the Informed public in a Trust mindset.
In Australia, the overall trust index for the Informed public is 59%. On the other hand, the mass population is at 46%. This is a massive gap of 13 points and means that 54% of the mass population are living in distrust.
50% of the mass population use social media as a reliable source of news in the Asia Pacific, Middle East and Africa region. This is second behind Latin America (53%) which is a scary figure as anyone can post ‘news’ and 1 in 2 people would trust it. It is no surprise then that 73% of all respondents said they worry about false information or fake news being used as a weapon.
Women’s trust index, in general, is lower than men’s, notably in developed markets like Australia, U.S.A., Germany, Japan, France and Canada. The most significant gap of 7% between women and men’s is in business trust.
It’s not all doom and gloom though
Through all of this, the trust relationship that a person has with their employer ranks highest in any single institution, with trust levels at 75% globally and 77% in Australia. Even for the more sceptical mass population who have lost faith in the system, trust in employers is high.
With corporate culture and need for change, people are increasingly turning to their employer in particular CEOs to lead it – 76% say CEOs should take the lead on change rather than waiting for the government to impose it. This is an 11-point increase in the last year alone!
Build a positive change
This relationship between employee-employer is unique. Employees are ready and willing to trust their employers. Employees who have higher trust in their employer are far more likely to engage in beneficial actions on their behalf.
There is an obligation to employers to lead from the top-down, setting a positive example not only at a corporate level but at a societal level.
There is an excellent opportunity to create positive change and show leadership on topics such as prejudice, discrimination, diversity, sexual harassment, bullying, mental health, etc. The leadership team should be setting out what items are essential to the type of ethical culture it wants its staff to operate within. A Code of Culture is an excellent place to establish and clearly set the ethical framework in which staff are expected to operate.
Often, a Code of Conduct is a substantial policy-based document that employees sign, but rarely engage. We have recently witnessed unprecedented demand from corporate leadership teams who want assistance turning a Code of Conduct document into an engaging training program that teaches employees about the code they should be operating within.
Your staff are trusting and willing to be trained on your organisation’s code of conduct. Become a leader today and create real change at your organisation.
Discuss your Code of Conduct with us
We can support you by developing an engaging training course to educate your staff on your organisation’s Code of Conduct.