No matter what you do, trust is the most important asset that you can have.
It's crucial for business.
It's required for relationships.
It's the foundation for self-confidence.
We all know in some way or form how to build trust but it is often easy to commit the following mistakes when doing so:
1. Trying Too Hard to be Perfect
This is done when we feel the need to impress. We want to be more credible so we hide our weaknesses and play up our strengths. We try to be perfect in every way. This is often seen in both personal and business relationships.
This is a mistake because perfection is not genuine. We all know that people are not perfect and always appearing perfect can cause others to be suspicious. This need for perfection also leads to exaggerating and trying too hard to prove yourself. When you exaggerate, you're stretching the truth, which is a bad way to build trust.
Quick Fix: Always be honest. Realize that you don't need to be perfect and showing others your mistakes is showing them you are human and genuine. This goes much further in building trust than trying to appear perfect.
2. Not Committing
Politicians are great at this. People pleasers as well. In order to please as many people as possible, it is a common practice to not commit. The theory is that when you don't take sides, you won't ever alienate the opposite side.
This almost always backfires.
When you don't commit, it shows that are a front runner unwilling to make a commitment in what you believe in. Despite your intention, you will be viewed as someone who can be swayed easily. Although adopting this approach will decrease your chances of being hated, it also decreases your chances for being loved and deeply trusted.
Quick Fix: Pick a side that you believe in. Forget about what others will think of you. No matter what side you choose, as long as you have conviction, you'll get respect from everyone.
3. Respecting Only the "Important People"
One phenomenon I see in the corporate world is "selective" respect. There are people out there who try to build trust and credibility by showing respect to people they deem important and completely disrespecting "less important" personnel such as secretaries or other front line employees.
This stems from the faulty belief that “there is no need to waste time on people who can't help me”. If I connect with the right people, it doesn't matter who I step on to get to the top. This is by far the most ignorant of the three mistakes.
These "lowly" support positions usually work closely with the "important people" and have their ears. When you disrespect them, your chances of building trust with the higher ups are much lower. Also, there is never a reason to disrespect anyone.
A close cousin to selective respect is name-dropping. This is when you mention a "popular" name that has power and/or status in order to raise your own status and credibility. This is usually apparent and an extreme turn-off for anyone you are trying to build trust with.
Quick Fix: Respect everyone you come across. You are no better or worse than they are. Don't drop names. Ask others to refer you and to your advocates. It is much easier to build trust when someone else is doing it for you.
If you want to achieve your goals and be successful, focus on building deep trust. When you have that, the rest is easy.
Robert Chen is the founder of Embrace Possibility and his passion is to help individuals gain clarity and reach their full potential. If you would like help applying the concepts in this article to your life, contact Robert for a free consultation by clicking here.
If you're going through a tough time right now, check out Robert's article on How to Feel Better Right Away and if you're having trouble getting what you want out of life, check out How to Always Achieve Your Goals.