In the words of Goethe:
- Isadore Sharp, Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts "Trust was the emotional capital of Four Seasons, our ethical imperative for long-lasting success, a code and a compass enshrined in the corporate culture. . . [It] had been the primary reason for our success, crucial to the reputation that precedes us in every deal, in every hotel opening, and in all our operations. . . Like the invisible hand that regulates the free market, the invisible hand of trust had been our guide and our dynamic. And every year, as trust rose, our reputation rose with it."
- Al Carey, Frito-Lay "Our team trusts each other. We move faster on difficult decisions. So when you trust each other there's no need for all the extra bureacracy. It can allow you to reduce layers of management. It can allow you to move directly to decisions quicker, because you trust each other. You don't have multiple groups overlooking each other to make sure that people are doing things the right way.
- Andrea Jung, Avon "Our entire model has been build around personal relationships with our customers, and that is based on trust. The power of those relationships is the key to our success and to the future.
- Charlie Munger, Berkshire Hathaway "Our model is a seamless web of trust that's deserved on both sides. That's what we're aiming for. . . Not much procedure, just totally reliable people correctly trusting one another."
- Meg Whitman, eBay "More than a decade later, I still believe that Pierre [Omidyar] was right; the fundamental reason eBay worked was that people everywhere are basically good. We provided the tools and reinforced the values, but our users built eBay. Our community's willingness to trust eBay - and one another - was the foundation of eBay's success. . . eBay is all about trust."
- Muhammad Yunus, Grameen Bank "We were convinced that the bank should be built on human trust, not on meaningless paper contracts. . . People everywhere prefer to live in an environment of trust."
- Jim Goodnight, SAS Institute "I believe management must trust the people who work for them. You have to treat people like they make a difference. And if you do, they will... When you trust people to do their best, the revenue takes care of itself, even in challenging economic times."
- Azim Premji, Wipro "Values are a matter of trust. They must be reflected in each one of your actions. Trust takes a long time to build but can be lost quickly by just one inconsistent act."
- Terri Kelly, W.L. Gore & Associates "[T]here are some fundamental things that hold Gore together. One is values to which we all subscribe, in terms of how we're going to treat each other - there's a huge trust element in the Gore culture.
- Tony Hsieh, Zappos "We trust our employees to use their best judgment when dealing with eac and every customer."
- Ken Chenault, American Express "The competitive advantage of trust has never been more important or more valuable."
- John Wooden, UCLA "I believe the following: 'It is better to trust and be disappointed occasionally than to mistrust and be miserable all the time.'"
- Google "Too many companies have been built on not trusting people but on making rules and prohibitions, telling customers what they cannot do, and penalizing them for doing wrong. Google has built its empire on trusting us. (Jeff Jarvis, What Would Google Do?)"
More than a decade later, I still believe that Pierre was right; the fundamental reason eBay worked was that people everywhere are basically good. We provided the tools and reinforced the values, but our users built eBay. Our community's willingness to trust eBay-and one another-was the foundation of eBay's success.
Pierre's premise was not that all people are good; it was that most people are basically good. I agree that it is an optimistic statement, but let's be clear: we did not build eBay by sticking our heads in the sand. We did not ignore or deny that fraud, distasteful behavior, or unlawful activities occurred on eBay from time to time. Quite the contrary: we invested significantly in eBay's Trust & Safety division, which policed the site. We created software that looked for patterns that might be signs of trading in counterfeit goods, illegal building, or even behavior that was simply inappropriate, such as one user stealing a digital photograph from another user's page. But from day one it was clear to us that such behavior involved only a tiny minority of people.
In Jump Point, Tom Hayes observed:
If we believed that we would or might be cheated, few of us would be eager to transact on eBay. But we do trust, not only eBay as the intermediary, but also the user community itself. The eBay community is self-policing and self-correcting of cheats and fakes. Sellers and buyers earn their reputations. And reputation is one's calling card and bond on eBay. Sure, a cheater may get away with it once, but they system will brand and marginalize that person quickly.
Many participants report that they are more willing to trade with someone with a high rating, or even that they will only trade with individuals with high ratings. In that sense, some traders are able to create a brand identity that increases their volume of sales or even the price at which they are able to sell items. . . Even a few negative ratings can seriously damage a reputation, and so frequent traders are even very careful about nurturing their rating by providing swift execution of honest trades.
Stephen: I remember a time years ago when I was traveling with my parents. We visited a less developed country that was known to be corrupt. We hired a driver we thought we could trust to take us several places, and we left a number of watches and other gifts we had purchased in our bags locked in the trunk of his car while we ded some sightseeing. When we returned, we checked inside our bags to make sure the boxes were all there. They were. But when we got back to the U.S. and opened the boxes, we discovered they were all empty!
Greg: Several years ago my wife, and I invested a significant amount of money in salvage wood from old buildings. We never drilled down on the particulars of the investment because the man handling it was our neighbor, who assured us of the wisdome of the venture and repeatedly told us to trust him. Imagine our shock one evening when we saw the arrest of this neighbor on the local television news. We came to find out that he had sold the same inventory to several other investors as well as to us!
- Never talk to strangers.
- Never accept candy or gifts from a stranger.
- Never go anywere with a stranger.
- Never let a caller at the door or on the telephone know that you are alone.
- Always try to walk with a friend or a grown-up.
- If a stranger grabs you, yell for help as loud as you can.
The cost of trust may on occasion be devastating, but the high cost of distrust is virtually guaranteed. (FERNANDO FLORES - Former Finance Minister of Chile)
Our distrust is very expensive. (RALPH WALDO EMERSON)
Trust is the linchpin of a partnership. With trust, both people can concentrate on their separate responsibilities, confident the other person will come through. . . . Without trust, it's better to work alone. . . . No trust, no partnershp. (RODD WAGNER AND GALE MULLER - Gallup Executives and Authors)
It is. . . happier to be sometimes cheated than not to trust. (SAMUEL SMILES - Scottish Author and Reformer)
No question children are more trusting, and therefore much more creative. Somewhere in adolescence, I suspect that changes.
-Charles Green Founder, Trusted Advisor Associates
If it seems too good to be true, it IS too good to be true. Mark Twain
One time, I hired a guide to take me fly-fishing. While we were fishing, he asked me, "What do you see?"
"I see a beautiful river."
"Do you see any fish?"
Then he told me to put on a pair of polarized glasses.
Suddenly everything looked dramatically different. I could see through the water, and I could see fish - a lot of fish. Suddenly I saw enormous possibilities that I had not seen before. The fish were there all along, but until I put on the glasses, they were hidden.
- What kind of glasses am I wearing?
- Where did I get them?
- Are they creating the results I want in my life?
- Are they enabling me to see the abundant possibilities that exist for creating prosperity, energy and joy?
The incentives for participation in the trading were great and the inducements to remain in the trading alliance abundantly clear. Remarkably, the system, even across many miles and cultures, operated basically on a handshake [which itself was an expression of trust that showed that the hand held no dagger]. Given the cost and time of going to court over business disputes - not to mention the often corrupt and uneven disposition of justice from the Fatimidi judges - the Maghribi created their own stateless form of justice that worked very well. The key to ensuring performance and compliance: cheats and deadbeats were immediately humiliated and ostracized. In today's parlance, they were voted off the island. The fear of public reprisal and shunning proved to be an extraordinary self-enforcing mechanism.
Nobody can enjoy the fruits of success if you have to argue with your own conscience.... People may listen to what you say but they will believe what you do. Values are a matter of trust. They must be reflected in each one of your actions. (Azim Premji - Chairman, Wipro)
While we're sure this was a great deal for customers, it was inadvertent, and we took a big loss (over $1.6 million - ouch) selling so many items so far under cost. However, it was our mistake. We will be honoring all purchases that took place on 6pm.com during our mess up. We apologize to anyone that was confused/or frustrated during our [sic] little hiccup and thank you all for being such great customers. We hope you continue to Shop, Save. Smile. at 6pm.com.
An enormous pleasure in life is to be rightly trusted. (Charlie Munger, Vice Chairman, Berkshire Hathaway