Trust, leadership and the C-suite conversation

Click here - 26th Annual Global CEO Survey: India perspective

The growing importance of trust is deeply intertwined with the changing nature of leadership, due to the increased complexity of stakeholder dynamics, the growing need for the private sector to help solve important societal problems and the intensification of geopolitical and social tensions. CEOs have often been participants in these shifts. Meaningful dialogue with top management teams about the leadership implications of these forces may now help them strengthen and unleash the C-suite, enabling greater personal focus on the future.

In the near term, CEOs across the world need to prioritise and manage external risks and challenges to survive and drive profitability. But in the long term they need to reimagine, reinvent and reconfigure their businesses and work culture to thrive. Importantly, they need to act on both now, and simultaneously.

Building trust – customer, investor and employee – and a strong workplace culture is as fundamental to business as inclusiveness that connotes acknowledgement of not only diversity but also differences of perspectives and experiences. An advanced analysis of data from the last global CEO survey uncovered a statistically significant direct correlation between customer trust and both financial financial and non-financial performance of a company.

Trust, leadership and the C-suite conversation

“We have invested in creating a ‘trust and brand’ company as opposed to a complex products company. We believe products must be such that customers have significant claim experiences. Insurance products without significant claims do not establish trust. If you build trust and create a differentiated experience, customers are bound to buy the next product from you.”

– Varun Dua, CEO, Acko General Insurance Ltd.

Leaders also need to push for a better environment for doing business by engaging with the government and other relevant stakeholders to speed up the unboxing of regulatory frameworks and initiatives for ease of doing business. This is particularly important for India – global and Asia Pacific CEOs in the survey have placed India among their choice of top nine investment destinations.

The need to reinvent their business along with ensuring it survives the current uncertainties is not just a challenge but more of an opportunity for CEOs to lead with purpose, build trust in the entire ecosystem, and build collaborative systems with business and non-business entities. As catalysts of change, CEOs can help generate both business and social value, and in the long run drive sustainable development.

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Sanjeev Krishan

Sanjeev Krishan

Chairperson, PwC India

Tel: +91 124 330 6017

Vivek  Prasad

Vivek Prasad

Leader - Markets, PwC India