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Australians believe business should both increase profits and serve the community

February 28, 2019

The results of the 2019 Trust Barometer indicate that the Australian public is prepared for, and expecting, business to show leadership in solving social issues while also increasing profits, also known as shared value.

A key finding from the report is that the belief in business as a change agent is stronger than ever with 73% believing that a company can both increase profits and serve the community, up 9 points from last year.

While overall trust in Australia remains below the global average, the public are looking for leadership from CEOs with 79% saying that CEOs should take the lead on change rather than waiting for government to impose it, up 14 points from last year.

Despite this, credibility of both CEOs and Board of Directors remain on the very low end of the spectrum, both down from last year, demonstrating the opportunity of shared value as a means for companies to embed purpose at every level of their business, from the boardroom to frontline workers.

Encouragingly, Edelman CEO Steven Spurr highlights, ‘collaboration and community’ as critical in increasing trust and points to SVP Founding Member IAG as an example of an organisation, ‘Firmly committed to working collaboratively with local communities to make them more connected, resilient and ultimately safer and doing it in a way that’s profitable for the company.