Thanking Barbara Kimmel

October 31, 2016

In this blog, I would like to extend my respect and thanks to a person in the “Trust Community” who is a tireless worker and friend, and who has done as much as anyone I know to advance the cause of trust worldwide.

I have known Barbara Brooks Kimmel for nearly 10 years, and I am continually impressed with her creativity to come up with new ways to encourage leaders to become stronger on building, maintaining, and repairing trust.

With her husband, Jordan Kimmel, Barbara founded Trust Across America-Trust Around the World nearly a decade ago. Barbara began studying the impact that trust has on organizations of all types.

All of her work is research based, and there is substantial data that links the level of trust to the success of organizations worldwide.

Their proprietary FACTS® Framework is a way to rank organizations in terms of trustworthiness. The acronym stands for:

• Financial Stability & Strength
• Accounting Conservativeness
• Corporate Integrity
• Transparency
• Sustainability

Each year her firm analyzes and ranks over 1500 of the largest US public companies to determine which ones demonstrate the highest trust levels. Moreover, the Framework correlates their performance with how profitable they are.

Barbara is a prolific writer and has produced a steady stream of pithy articles and white papers relating the various aspects of trust to performance and making suggestions for how organizations and leaders can do a better job of building higher trust.

She shares her information on the Trust Across America: Trust Around the World website, a clearinghouse of organizational trust resources and tools.

Through her efforts, an association of trust professionals was established three years ago. The Trust Alliance is a growing global membership organization comprised of a cross functional group who work and write in the field of trust and related topics. These people network as a support group to suggest research topics and keep pushing the state of the art.

Each year Barbara runs a competition to identify the top thought leaders in the trust industry. This is her way to provide recognition to professionals who are at work daily as practitioners and also with their teaching, writing and consulting to advance the cause.

Individuals who are named a top thought leader for five years are honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award from Trust Across America: Trust Around the World. There are only a couple dozen people who have achieved that level of consistency. I am proud to be among them.

In addition, the program publishes a listing of top service providers each year in Trust! Magazine. The fall 2016 edition is available for free at the following address.

Barbara Kimmel is a tireless advocate of organizational trust. In 2012 she was named one of “25 women changing the world” by a group in NY called Good Business International. She deserves our thanks and gratitude for her continuous support of trust and the people who carry out this work.

If you are involved in the trust business, and I think everyone should be to some extent, look up the website and see the wonderful resources that Barbara has developed to be helpful. The world owes her a vote of gratitude for the work she is doing.


Interview with Barbara Kimmel

July 8, 2010

This week I interviewed Barbara Kimmel from the “Trust Across America” Organization. I have been impressed with this group as a real force for helping build a higher level of understanding about trust in organizations throughout our country. We need more people like Barbara and her husband Jordan, who runs a weekly radio broadcast on the Voice America Variety Channel specifically devoted to issues of trust. Here is my interview with Barbara Kimmel with some additional comments:

Trust Ambassador: Why did you start “Trust Across America”?

Kimmel: We started Trust Across America to collaboratively find solutions to America’s trust crisis. The time has come to wrap our arms around the word “trust” and to highlight companies and thought leaders that aren’t just doing things right, but are “doing the right thing”. We will provide collaborative forums, media, and other opportunities for consultants, academics and companies to share their best practices.

Trust Ambassador: What interesting or unusual things have happened with this experience?

Kimmel: Many individuals and organizations are reluctant to use the word “trust” or “trustworthy”. It’s very risky. The word just seems too big, burdensome, and even scary for some.

Trust Ambassador: Perhaps part of the issue is that to fully trust, one must be vulnerable. That may be uncomfortable for some people, especially for some leaders.

Trust Ambassador: How fast is the organization growing?

Kimmel: Fast. Right now our focus is on building a core trust ecosystem… professionals who want to roll up their sleeves and find actionable solutions to the trust crisis.

Trust Ambassador: What are your long term objectives or goals?

Kimmel: We want to reverse the trend in the breakdown of trust in corporate America by first developing a workable definition of trustworthy behavior and then identifying and highlighting those companies who are industry leaders, so that they can become role models. Essentially, we want to lead a “Trust Revolution” in corporate America.

Trust Ambassador: Has there been any down side to this effort?

Kimmel: Other than not enough hours in the day, no. People like yourself have been very generous with their time, and supportive of our efforts.

Trust Ambassador: How can people get involved?

Kimmel: Read our monthly newsletter at http://www.trustacrossamerica.org/documents/newsletters/newsletter.pdf. It outlines many ways for people to get involved. Email me at barbara@trustacrossamerica.com with comments/suggestions.

Trust Ambassador: I want to thank Barbara for this information and for the great work she is doing with Trust Across America. I also urge you to join Jordan Kimmel for his weekly broadcast on the Voice America Variety Channel on Wednesdays at noon EDT. http://www.voiceamerica.com/voiceamerica/vshow.aspx?sid=1713