Having understood that trust is ubiquitous and a necessary base for our overall communication and social interaction, it is easy to understand the importance of it. But let us take a closer look at different aspects of our lives to fully understand the immense impact of trust on our personal life and the lives of the others around us.
Trust is first established between the mother and her baby since the baby is completely helpless on its own and thus depends on the care of the mother. Throughout the following stages of development, the child learns the benefits of trusting the people around it, because it is the environment where it thrives and where it obtains most of its early knowledge. Later in life it will have been disappointed by others on several occasions, because trust may not always present in these interactions and working in mistrustful situations is an added mental burden.
During the working life, those connections prove most valuable, where one can completely rely on the other without having any second thoughts. This is the highest level of trust one can achieve, and it is favorable for important connections and close coworkers/partners. Individuals tend to only do business with people, where there is a trust-based-relationship. Within a company, every interaction is based on trust because each employee has specific tasks that are connected to those of others and altogether they work for the greater good of the company. Thus, the most important base for all these processes to run as smoothly as possible is the trust in the capabilities and motivation of others.
If one worker relies on the input of his colleague, but he does not deliver, it impacts the overall efficiency in a negative way and hurts the relationship in a way, that one side is disappointed and might look for other ways to reach the goal and therefore avoid the colleague in the future. This is evidence of miscommunication and disrupts the competitiveness of the business on a micro-level (depending on the company size). Furthermore, employees who do not trust their superiors, will not fulfill all their tasks, but rather develop their own solutions that often fail to match the current need due to a lack of a holistic strategical mindset. On top of that, this mistrustful behavior of employees decreases their own work satisfaction and therefore motivation. In most cases it will even lead to bad publicity for the company when they share this feeling with their family, friends and personal network. As we can see, trust among individuals is the essence of collaboration, that motivates us in our own tasks and that creates an environment of efficient teamwork in the workplace which promotes a positive company image to the outside world.
Additionally, trust can not only be established between two individuals but also between institutional bodies. In our modern society, marketers are constantly trying to put a number onto the brand trust of consumers, because it portrays the value of the brand. Once customers ‘believe’ and or trust a brand, their propensity to purchase the same product again increases. Additionally, customers would buy other products from the same brand. Perhaps the best example of this is Apple; Apple users not only buy Macs time and again but also prefer other Apple devices such as the iPad, iPod, iWatch, etc. Institutions everywhere are trying to appear trustworthy, because it directly translates into value.
Higher the levels of trust, lower is the perceived risk, higher will be the returns on the interaction or transaction.
Further, companies themselves want to appear trustworthy, not only to consumers, but to their very own employees. Imagine someone working for a company that missed the opportunity to establish a bond of trust: This individual will not see the value of putting in effort for an institution that he or she perceives as being far away from his or her own values and thus will neither be motivated nor working efficiently.
On top of that it will be hard for companies, that are not trusted by their employees, to attract talent for future competitiveness. Therefore, managers must promote trust through their own actions and integrate it deeply into the company culture.