We examine empirically how an organization that deliberately enhances interpersonal trust to become a significant organizational phenomenon, is different from a similar organization without explicit trust enhancement policies. The point of departure is relational signalling theory, which says that trust is a function of consistently giving off signals that indicate credible concern, to potential trustors. A matched pair of two consulting organizations, with different trust policies but otherwise similar characteristics, were studied intensively, using survey research, participant observation and half-open interviewing, focused on the generation of trust and the handling of trouble when trust was threatened or destroyed. A higher stage of trust can be reached by an inter-related set of policies: promoting a relationship-oriented culture, facilitation of unambiguous signalling, consistent induction training, creating opportunities for meeting informally, and the day-to-day management of competencies. Such policies are in principle independent of recognized contextual contingencies. © Blackwell Publishing Ltd 2008.