Is Your Profession Trusted?

Firefighters, Paramedics, Rescue Volunteers, Nurses, Pilots, Doctors, Pharmacists, Veterinarians, Air Traffic Controllers and Farmers are our nation’s most trusted professions in 2013, a Readers Digest study has concluded.

Unsurprisingly, those most trusted professions have not altered significantly from 2011 to 2013 and reflect that we value and trust professions that demonstrate the principles of being honest, transparent, accountable, accessible, competent, fair, and care for others.

These very same principals are equally applicable for those in leadership roles, although have not translated into a positive ranking for the profession of Chief Executive Officer [CEO] for some years.

CEO’s are the 41st most trusted profession which finds itself just above the professions [in order or ranking] of; Taxi Drivers, Journalists, Talk Back Radio Hosts, Real Estate Agents, Sex Workers, Call Centre Staff, Insurance Sales People, Politicians and Door to Door Salespeople who complete the list.

Similarly, with little movement between the top most trusted professions year on year, there is little movement for those professions who occupy the nation’s most “trust challenged” rankings.

To focus on one role in particular, that of CEO, those in the profession have a dilemma with trust declining.

One explanation could be found in research which suggests that an organisations leadership is viewed differently depending how the organisation is performing financially, for example if the CEO of organisation “A” was for all intents and purposes the same as the CEO of organisation “B” and organisation “A” was financially performing very well and organisation “B” was not, then the perception of the CEO of organisation “A” would be 51% more positive than the CEO of organisation “B”.

Undoubtedly we all recall recent examples of large scale redundancies and workforce reduction initiatives when asked about CEO’s, however, the financial performance impost adversely impacting the perception of the CEO is not the only factor.

The uncomfortable truth is that too many CEO’s forget the importance and value of being honest, transparent, accountable, accessible, competent, fair, and to act with genuine care for others, these are the most substantive of “trust challenged” behaviors that require intervention if the trust of the profession is to gain ground positively.

“Is Your Profession Trusted?” article was published in the Alwasat Newspaper July 2013.

Categories: Leadership

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