Why should people trust you?


Last week, I was hanging up my laundry, listening to a great business podcast about consulting, and was hit by a wall of wisdom:
"Your reputation in business is in large part based on your ability to make commitments and fulfill them.

If you can make commitments and fulfill them, people trust you. That's what trust is based on.

If you and I are developing a relationship, and the first thing you tell me you're going to do, you do, I go, "Ok, that's cool, he did what he said he was going to do."

Now, I'm not going to trust you with my life at that point.

But then, the second thing you say you're going to do, you do.

A few weeks, a few months, then years, if you continue the habit of doing the things you say you're going to do, then I trust you with more and more.

And that's how our reputations are built." [1]
I think this applies equally to business and life in general.

So many people fail this simple test. It really comes down to the old adage:
"Say what you mean, and mean what you say."
These days, people tend to make commitments, and immediately break them without a second thought.

It's so easy to talk about doing something, but much more difficult to follow through.

In fact, psychologists have shown that people are actually less likely to accomplish a goal if they talk about it first. Talking about it apparently give people the sense that they're already done it, so it feels less urgent. There's a whole TED talk about this.

It may seem obvious, but today you can really differentiate yourself by simply being dependable.

So remember, if you decide to say you're going to do something, actually do it!

If you do this enough times, people will trust you.

[1] Michael Port in http://www.freelancetransformation.com/blog/how-consultants-can-steal-the-show-with-michael-port

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