At the risk of over simplifying the subject, I would recommend that business leaders and companies remember the acronym "GRACE" ie Governance, Risk, Anti-Money Laundering, Compliance & Ethics. These are important virtues when it comes to building trust.

The embracing of each and every one of them will be essential to guide and promote trust, and prevent the destruction of trust that have been established, built over time and maintained between companies and stakeholders.

Good governance that delivers performance and profitability which complies with regulations (among others, anti-money laundering as in the recent BSI / 1MDB case), conforms with good ethics, and is equipped with adequate and effective risk management will offer a good trust-enabling framework.

Needless to say, the honesty, diligence and accountability of business leaders will be of foremost importance in determining the trust quotient of the companies they helm. Examples include Dr Cheong Choong Kong (Singapore Airlines) and Warren Buffet (Berkshire Hathaway), just to name a notable few.

Over time, some of these companies become great institutions which are trusted and loved by their stakeholders, with a distinctive culture of honour and integrity. Hence the importance of "GRACE"

This article was first published in The Business Times on 26 September 2016