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SocialTalent Author Spotlight: Vessy Tasheva

Welcome to our new spotlight series, where we introduce you to some of the incredible authors on the SocialTalent learning platform. With over 100 experts delivering quality content on all areas of workplace excellence, we pride ourselves on having a faculty that are not only heavily experienced in their respective fields, but are also engaging instructors from a diverse set of backgrounds.

Today, we’re going to meet the amazing Vessy Tasheva. CEO and Founder of – a global strategic organizational consultancy – Vessy’s areas of expertise lie in trust, culture, DEIB, trust-driven inclusive leadership, and leader self-trust.

Q. Can you give us some background information about your experience and history within this field?

In the 11 years prior to becoming a founder, I worked as Chief Strategy Officer of a talent tech startup, as well as in various roles across product, marketing, and culture in companies that ranged in size between 4 and 800 employees.

I have been fascinated by, and dedicated to, researching and educating how leaders build and repair trust internally and externally, especially under the pressures of hypergrowth, pre-IPO readiness, M&As, as well as layoffs, restructuring, and crisis.

In 2023 I delivered a masters dissertation on Trust at Trinity College Dublin as part of an MSc in Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy in Trinity’s School of Medicine; in it I examined how our earliest experiences of trust shape who we become as adults. The 2024 report is a continuation of this work with the ambitious goal to link organizational and inter-organizational trust to self-trust and interpersonal trust in a practical and actionable way for leaders and organizations. What drives me in this work is my purpose – helping people remove the internal and external barriers they face so they can live happier and healthier lives.

I’m also an angel investor in digital health ( and mental health (, as well as Advisory Board Member of Deystvie (bringing change to the lives of LGBTIQ+ people in Bulgaria), and Diversity & Inclusion Board Member of Positive Luxury (shaping a sustainable future for luxury). has been recognised by the industry for its thought leadership 5 years in a row and was also featured in Top Emerging Diversity & Inclusion Companies in Europe for 2021 and 2023 by Manage HR Magazine. 

Q. What are you working on right now?

This week we published our third international independent report – 2024 The Impact of Trust Report with insights on how their leaders build and repair trust internally with employees and within teams, as well as externally with clients, partners, and investors during hypergrowth, layoffs, restructuring, as well as when getting ready for IPOs or M&A.

The report features 10 top tech companies from North America & Europe with six – 2,200 employees: Automattic, Hubject, Plan A, Reward Gateway, Sentur, Daye, Progress Software, Jobylon, Telerik Academy, Mitto, and a bonus feature – Ireland’s social innovation fund, Rethink Ireland. 

In the report, we also announced the winners of our 2024 Companies That Value Trust awards by, with 16 categories where we look at each layer, pillar, and ingredient of Trust.

Learn more: Download the 2024 Impact of Trust Report now from

Q. Can you give us a detailed overview of what your SocialTalent content covers?

As you create a culture of psychological safety in your team, the levels of trust that your team members must have in you as a manager grows. Trust is developed through caring about your team as people, being a stable pillar for your team, and having a positive and hopeful outlook. In this path, you’ll learn how to build trust as a leader through distinct practices and habits, including:

  • Defining trust-driven, inclusive leadership.
  • Building stability through One-on-Ones.
  • Practicing self-care as a leader.

Q. Why is this an important topic of study right now?

Our team has been examining Trust since 2021, and our 2024 report is just one step closer to connecting the dots between Self-Trust, Interpersonal Trust, Team Trust, Organizational Trust, Inter-organizational Trust, and Trust in Society. We’re just getting started! 

For over a decade, Edelman’s annual Trust Barometer reports has been flagging trust issues and challenges in business, media, politics, and society overall. Unfortunately, the trust challenges from the previous years don’t get resolved, but new ones pile up. 

In 2017, Edelman announced that trust was “in crisis.” 2018 followed a similar story with the “battle for truth” being named. In 2020 came “challenging competence and ethics,” followed by a 2022 cycle of distrust, while 2023 was all about navigating a polarized world. Now it’s all culminating in trust challenges that relate to artificial intelligence. 

Humans tend to struggle to be transparent, accountable, empathetic – and AI tends to mirror humanity with its biases. So whether the future will be one where we thrive on trust or mistrust will once again depends on us. Leaders need to be aware of that. 

So while we work with organizations to help them in their internal and external efforts to build and repair trust, we also work with executives in the form of 1-on-1 coaching on their Self-Trust. That’s the key for them to reach their potential as leaders when it comes to their own performance and resilience. 

Our research shows that leaders who struggle to connect with their true authentic self struggle to build trust, and are more likely to be perceived as not trustworthy by their employees. 

We used our definition of Trust (with the pillars and ingredients mentioned earlier) to examine whether trust-related values are common among the company values of some of the most successful companies at the moment. 

We also examined what percentage of the companies who successfully fundraised in the last 12 months have Trust-related values among their company values. We based our research on Crunchbase data, looking at companies that successfully closed their last round of Series B – E funding in the period February 2023 – January 2024 in Europe. 

A few highlights to share, from the 150 companies: 

  • 42.6% have at least one trust-related value among their current company values, while 14% have 2 or more trust-related values. [Note: Responsibility & Ownership were marked under Accountability, Openness under Transparency, and Diversity, Inclusion under Belonging & Equity].
  • 30.67% have no company values whatsoever listed on their website (on their about/team page, careers page, job listings). 
  • 20% have made acquisitions in the last 12 months.
  • 30% are actively hiring at the moment.
  • 2.6% had layoffs reported in the last year.

Q. What do you hope learners will gain from doing your missions?

Leaders often perceive trust as this abstract thing that takes ages to build and can only be felt, but not measured. Throughout the years we’ve researched Trust and broken it down into layers, pillars, and ingredients. Each one of them can be measured and specific actions can be assigned to each area. We have demystified Trust and now leaders have the tools to put it in practice today. 

According to Gartner: “Employees at high-trust organizations experience 106% more energy when working, 50% better productivity and 76% higher engagement”, and they also suggest that psychological safety adds up to 26% in employee performance. And in 2017, Harvard Business Review published that “compared to people in low-trust companies, people at high-trust companies report 74% less stress”, 13% fewer sick days, and 29% more satisfaction with their lives, all leading to 40% less burnout.

In the meantime, Trust has been a challenge for many companies especially after their layoffs and it deserves more attention. So we have something dedicated to this coming out soon:

Company Culture after Layoffs: A original series in 10 episodes (video podcast). We speak to VPs of People, Heads of Culture and Employee Experience, as well as Directors of Internal Communications on how you can heal your company culture. We’re launching this in Q2!

Q. Where can people find you?

There’s a few ways to get in-touch with me:



X: @vessytash

Interested to see how Vessy’s content could help your team? Get in-touch with SocialTalent today.

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