How to reverse the decline in CEO trust

Visibility is just one factor; employees want real-time interaction with their leaders. Participation in workplace conversations—face to face, or via technology—can close that gap.

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Two recent reports paint a troubling scenario for internal communicators.

The Edelman Trust Barometer and Gatehouse’s State of the Sector report are must-reads for anyone in leadership and employee communications. When viewed side by side, the reports show a dangerous gap that communicators ought to heed.
Edelman’s annual Trust Barometer shows trust in CEOs is at its lowest level ever, 37 percent, having fallen 12 percentage points in the last year. The report isn’t saying specifically that employees don’t trust their own CEO, but one might infer that.

As for Gatehouse’s ninth State of the Sector report, it tells another story about communication gaps with senior leaders. In this report, communicators cited strong communication skills for senior leaders and executives at their company, rating most as excellent or good.

That’s heartening, but here’s the gap.

Those skills don’t relate to visibility and approachability. Only about one-fifth of senior leaders are seen as very visible or approachable; the number drops for executive team members.

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