Do your employees trust you as an information source? A global survey says yes.

Do your employees trust you as an information source? A global survey says yes.

Every year, respected global communications firm Edelman conducts a comprehensive study looking at the people and institutions people trust.

In news that should surprise no one, trust levels have declined across the board. Trust in government and media took a particular hit in 2021.

Business is most trusted

What should catch business leaders’ attention, however, is this finding: At 61%, business is the most trusted institution, ahead of NGOs at 59%, government at 52% and media at only 50%.

One big caveat

While businesses are now the most trusted source of information, that trust takes a “locals only” tone, with 77% of respondents trusting their own employer rather than general business.  

That’s good news for businesses who want to talk to their employees about important public policy or societal issues but may have been reluctant to do so in the past. The data suggests now is the time to put internal communications at the center of corporate strategy.

Last man standing

In a news article, Edelman chief executive Richard Edelman said, “There's this giant void left by the inability of the government. We might think, historically, that the government would [be trusted to handle societal issues] but they're not, so business has got to step in.”

Putting it into practice

What does this look like in real life? CEOs and other business leaders should take a deeper look at how they communicate with their employees on issues important to the company and the workforce. If communication is lackluster or nonexistent, it is time to ramp up efforts to tell workers where the company stands on certain issues, and what values and beliefs the company holds dear.

Bottom line, they trust you, and they want to hear from you.

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