It is a fact that honesty and ethics play a significant role not only in today’s businesses but also to the community as a whole. Trust is crucial and determines the destiny of many firms and professionals because nowadays, frauds and scandals destroyed almost all of the moral values such as honesty, ethics, communication, discipline, respect and integrity and increased suspicion, corruption and unreliability.
Moreover, trust is the foundation of all healthy relationships and in Australia being honest and reliable is something important and powerful. So, trust provides many advantages for firms, people and society that can change the world for good.
And what are those benefits? According to a recent research from Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand, when businesses are reliable and trustworthy, have benefits such as »increased revenue, increased value delivered to citizens, greater connection for staff with their employer, lower employee turnover and higher shareholder returns.» All these result from increased trust.
However, in Australia trust in many firms is decreasing but in professions such as doctors, nurses, engineers, teachers, police and accountants is increasing. In addition, honesty appears to be strengthening for organisations which have ‘‘clear values and a purpose beyond just profit.»
According to another study of Australian CEOs, 89% stated that trust is built with »workforce by being transparent about their values.» Values such as honesty, being ethical, acting with integrity, building face to face relationships and communicating openly can help construct trust and promote business advantages by putting them at the core of a firm and using them as a main ingredient for connecting clients and employees. So, »old fashioned values are the new trust.»
James Sharpe and Charles H Green, declared that »People and organisations with high trust enjoy tremendous support and success. When trust is present, customers are loyal, innovation prospers, time to market is short, costs decline, partnerships work effectively and people are motivated.»
What is more, another survey of Global Corruption Barometer which took place in Australia, in August 2018, showed that »Accountants (75%) are among the most trusted professional group in Australia and New Zealand, behind doctors (90%), engineers (84%) and teachers (83%). But trust in business, the media, the government and non-profit organisations declined in Australia between 2017 and 2018.»
Another factor that plays a crucial role in honesty, is leadership because management’s effectiveness is determined by that and can create positive consequences such as job satisfaction, organisational commitment and bond to the leader’s choices.
Last but not least, the research from Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand suggests that »companies that are not trusted must work harder to retain and grow their customer base, to attract talented employees and to maintain their social license to operate.»
Taking everything into consideration, I would say that companies in order to keep or regain their trust must communicate and maintain healthy relationships between their customers, employees and stakeholders and focus on their needs but »never forget the importance of honesty.»