Miller’s Bar | Trusted Company of the Month

Trust, not money, is the currency of business and life.

Dearborn, MI, the home of the World Famous Ground Round Burger, only found at Miller’s Bar is a trusted find. If your taste buds are craving a fresh burger this bar is the place to get it, and don’t expect to be treated as something special.  One review says, “Simple burgers. Don’t ask for anything fancy because you ain’t gettin’ it.” Another customer said, “It was so simple yet….so amazing.” This place is a no-frills, humble place; you get exactly what you pay for. The hamburger is delivered on a bun brought to you on a piece of waxed paper. Need a pickle? Pick it out of the pickle jar on the condiment tray.

If it sounds like a dive, and in many ways it is. But its reputation exceeds the simplicity of the burger and its table settings. Customers rave “the simple menu makes it unique!” But what truly sets Miller’s apart is its form of payment. Miller’s uses an honor system. The patron tells the bar tender what they had and the bartender sums up the total in his head, takes the cash and makes change. No credit cards, no plates, and no tableware. Miller’s Bar has established an environment of trust. Miller’s Bar agrees with my research, when trust is established, customers pay more, tell others, and come back, and in Miller’s case, people come from all over the world to eat a famous Ground Round Burger.


Trusted Restaurants, Miller’s Bar, Dearborn MI, Miller’s Bar Dearborn MI, The Trust Edge

Open Values Lead to Higher Character: QuikTrip | Company of the Month

Since 2003 QuikTrip has been listed in Fortune Magazine’s 100 Best Companies to Work For. QuikTrip is a company that creates a trusted environment by laying a foundation of shared values for over 7,000 employees. The successful convenience store chain, based out of Tulsa, OK, makes a point of getting people behind its unifying value, “Do the right thing for the employee and for the customer.” While it may seem simple this shared value is meaningful and has been a foundation of their notable culture of trust.

QuickTrip was consistently on Fortune’s Top 100 Places to Work For because of the character of its people. Every stakeholder in the organization is valued and considered. QuickTrip is known for its great service because employees have an expectation to be dependable and have a strong work ethic. These things create an environment where people work hard and have fun. In turn Quiktrip rewards its employees for their hard work with great pay, benefits and an endless amount of fountain drinks. QuickTrip contributes to the growth of their own employees as well as to the community through United Way, Big Brothers Big Sisters and National Safe Place.

QuikTrip knows their values and makes them known to all their employees. When you know your values and make them known. You will enjoy a business climate rich in high character. 



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Feed My Starving Children: An Example of Compassion | Trusted Company of the Month

Started by a Minnesota businessman, Richard Proudfit, Feed My Starving Children has been packaging and shipping food to the world’s hungry since 1987. The organization collaborated with major corporations like Cargill, Pillsbury and General Mills to create a meal that would be packed full of nutrients and could feed malnourished children. After delivering these meals to third world countries, the nonprofit realized they could do more than just provide nutritional meals. Now, not only do they distribute food, they partner with other organizations in helping to stabilize communities by devoting their other resources to schools, healthcare, ministry, agriculture, and micro-business to further develop third-world countries.

Feed My Starving Children has proven to be a trusted company. They are named among the nation’s 2% most-trustworthy charities. The organization is not just a name on a list of best charities. They’ve been named to this 2% becaues of the tremendous results, partially contributed by volunteers. All meals that are sent overseas have been hand packaged by groups of volunteers. FMSC increased its number of meals from 400,000 meals a year in 1994 to 153,000,000 meals a year in 2012. They reached a milestone in early 2012 of 600 million meals produced since the beginning of FMSC.

If you want to volunteer with Feed My Starving Children or want to know more about this trusted organization, go to


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CSPAN | Trusted Company of the Month

The Cable Satellite Public Affairs Network, nearly 30 years old, isn’t the television station to tune into for political fluff. Nor does it fill the airwaves with the new style of media journalism that some describe as mere editorial opinion disguised as news. Viewers wont find competitive taglines or shouts of clever advertising jargon. That vein of political entertainment is found on the other television news channels. Yet C-SPAN and its staff have garnered a long list of awards. They operate on the premise that citizens inherently want to trust that the information being broadcasted is unfiltered and unedited, spoken directly to them from the house floor, without the color commentary. C-SPAN has achieved exemplary trust through their famous brand of transparency and clarity.


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Wikipedia: The Free Encyclopedia | The Trust Edge

When trust is lost, there is little time to lose. Discern the situation, and then quickly make a plan to rebuild it. Wikipedia thrives today because the company made haste to rebuild lost trust after the John Seigenthaler incident. In November 2005, it came out that an untrue and potentially libelous statement in the biography of John Seigenthaler, a famous journalist, had gone unnoticed for months on Wikipedia. Seigenthaler wrote a fairly scathing editorial in the New York Times criticizing Wikipedia as a “flawed and irresponsible research tool.”2 Since Wikipedia is open-source, deriving its value from the trust people have in it, as the public at large can edit it, this loss of trust was potentially devastating. The Wikipedia Foundation knew that it would need to do more than issue an apology to John Seigenthaler. Its actions were as follows:


1. It made a special section called “biography of living persons,” which would be more difficult to edit and would be monitored more frequently.

2. It stopped allowing anonymous users to create articles.

3. It spent time showing the relative validity of data in Wikipedia, especially as compared with well-respected encyclopedias.


The preventive and reactive measures taken by Wikipedia in this situation regained its public trust. Further boosting its reputation, Nature magazine compared the accuracy of Wikipedia with that of Encyclopaedia Britannica, and found them to have roughly an equal number of flaws!


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High Point University | Trusted Company of the Month

When Nido Qubein took over as president of High Point University, he decided to change the way most colleges view students. Inexpensive sturdy wooden couches in resident halls and lounges were replaced with high-grade leather ones. Older televisions were replaced by the newest flat-screens. The list of upgrades goes on and on, and High Point University is a gorgeous facility today. Many universities might worry that the students would abuse the nicer amenities. Qubein told me, “We have seen the opposite. If you respect people, they will step up. Trust is fundamental to all we do.” The payoff: more students, greater visibility, a better work environment, higher retention and productivity, and a place where pride abounds among students, faculty, and staff.


High Point University, Trust in Education, Trusted Company of the month, The Trust Edge, Nido Qubein, David Horsager

McDonalds | Trusted Company of the Month

McDonald’s is trusted because of their consistency. They deliver the same product everywhere, everyday. Regardless of whether we love the French fries of the Golden Arches, or protest their nutritional content, we know who they are and what to expect. They give us the same thing every time. Consistency is the only way to build a brand or reputation. A brilliant marketing idea is interesting, but the product is not trusted unless it is consistent. Predictability and reliability are the cornerstones of this pillar.  



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iPods, Mac Air, Mac mini, iPhones and iPads: Creations of Apple Inc. | Trusted Company of the Month

Apple Inc. has created a following of committed customers who are willing to pay more than competitors because Apple delivers fresh innovative technology again and again. From iPods, to the Mac Air, to the Mac mini, to iPhones, and iPads, Apple Inc. has created an environment where high standards of competency result in innovative usable technology. We must be highly competent and increasingly capable in the areas we want to be trusted.






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World Wide Travel Inc. | Trusted Company of the Month

Few firms can say they have too many customers. Even fewer travel agencies are thriving in the current economy because of the new “book-your-travel-online” culture in which we live. Not so for Joe Kimbell, president of  Wide World of Travel, Inc. He started selling travel from his post-college basement apartment in the mid 1990s and now it has become a multimillion-dollar agency that sends hundreds of groups to the far reaches of the globe every year. How did he do it? Trust.

Kimbell created a clear niche that he is passionate about, group travel. He also sought wisdom from a great mentor. But most importantly, he built long-term relationships by consistently delivering what he promised time and time again. Making personal phone calls, taking time to listen, talk, and follow up, even when things are busy, and quickly responding to inquiries and questions are just what clients have come to expect from Kimbell. Known for high integrity, if he ever makes a mistake, he is quick to make it right. If his clients ever make a mistake, he always works hard to make it right for them-frequently at the expense of his own company. He not only builds client relationships, but he also makes friendships based on trust.

Kimbell goes out of his way to make sure his clients have the highest level of confidence in what Wide World of Travel will offer, every time. Kimbell says, “Serving the client, keeping their best interests in mind has paid dividends.” What kind of dividends? Long-term friendships, more clients than he can handle, and a fun, guilt-free life, knowing he habitually does what is right. 


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Pepsi Co.: The Leader that Made Compassionate Cola | Trusted Company of the Month


Growing up in Madras, India, Indra Nooyi had always dreamed of living in the United States. It started when she came to the U.S. to earn her M.B.A. from Yale in 1978. She joined PepsiCo in 1994. In 2006 Nooyi became CEO of PepsiCo and has since led the mega brand that is in nearly 200 countries. Her legacy is that of compas­sion with an eye on the bottom line. Her motto: Performance with purpose. She shares her vision by saying, “We bring together what is good for business with what is good for the world.” How has she built the Pillar of Compassion that has changed the bottom line?

  • When Nooyi was awarded the CEO position in a race with a long-time colleague, she immediately flew out to meet the colleague and asked what she could do to keep him. She nearly matched her salary, among other things, and a great team was born.
  • Nooyi made a commitment to move away from unhealthy food and drinks. Examples in the works are high-fiber oatmeal and low-calorie Gatorade. According to Michael Useem, “By 2010, Nooyi has pledged, half of Pepsi’s US revenue will come from healthful foods.”
  • Nooyi has championed moves toward renewable energy and has campaigned against obesity.

 What has happened because of decisions made by the lady known as the “Caring CEO”? Profits have soared. And so has influence and impact of the $39 billion PepsiCo.


PepsiCo., Indra Nooyi, trusted company, Trust in Business, Consumer Trust, consistency, David Horsager, The Trust Edge     

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