Anjali Lai, Senior Analyst

Show Notes:

With words like “post-truth” and “truthiness” now in our lexicon, it seems logical to conclude that consumer trust is well on its way toward extinction. But in this episode of What It Means, Senior Analyst Anjali Lai shares new research that demonstrates consumer trust isn’t disappearing: It’s shifting course. She also shares how business leaders can cultivate trust and reap its plentiful benefits.

Consumer trust in traditional institutions, like governments and large firms, is waning. Trust increasingly flows toward new and novel businesses. Trust in startups is higher than ever, thanks in part to their mission of making life more convenient and their commitment to social issues. In the United States, Lai says, the cultural zeitgeist is having a David-and-Goliath moment, where “the “little guy” has an easier time earning trust.

However, large firms aren’t down for the count, and prioritizing trust can help. Many business leaders aim only to earn the bare minimum of trust necessary to get customers through the door. The mantra becomes “don’t screw up,” not “grow customers’ trust.” The current ebb of trust is a wake-up call that this isn’t working. Changes in trust can happen in your blind spot, until suddenly your organization no longer hits that bare minimum.

Start by understanding the nature of trust. It’s not just about perception. It exists in a two-way relationship that requires consistency, maintenance, and confidence. To learn more about how business leaders can cultivate trust, listen to the full episode.