Starbucks, Tata companies, and Walmart are some companies that evoke trust. The trust has been built over time by providing their customers with products and services that are consistent and reliable. It will be wrong to conclude that these companies do not make mistakes. All do, but companies that customers trust have credible mechanisms to handle customer complaints. Do these mechanisms always succeed in satisfying customer complaints? No, but they make a sincere effort in complaint resolution.
Customer trust is built by following an internal code of ethics. This code of ethics is applied across the organization from top to bottom. I have seen the code of ethics being followed in my ten years with the Tata group. I have also experienced it as a customer of many of these companies.
How does a company secure customer trust? You begin by looking at your internal business processes. These must be continually refined and developed to ensure the quality and consistency of service and products. The business processes may not be the most efficient. The focus is on quality and business excellence.
Such companies also focus on providing shareholder value but with a difference. There is a lot of emphasis on issues like diversity, gender justice, non-discrimination, and governance. Such actions may not immediately profit accretive, but they help build customer trust and company brand.
You build customer trust by working on the DNA of the company. The business strategy, business models, and business processes all help build trust.