Credibility is the foundation of trust. Without it would be impossible to establish a frank and authentic relationship with another human being. In business credibility is not about treating people equally regardless of the conditions, but with fairness and making them feel as a valuable and even irreplaceable part of the team. Being fair to each other pays off not only in financial terms. Most importantly, it contributes greatly to friendly relationships based on mutual respect.
The phenomenon of craftfishing is more and more frequent in business. This phrase denotes an action of creating a false online identity. Anyone who has sought a soul mate on social networks such as Facebook has probably felt the disappointment during a meeting in the real world. It turns out that the person not only looks differently than expected but also has a different personality.
Does the same effect occur when we are looking for a business partner or brand? There is nothing worse than the client or shareholder unmasking a false identity of the company.
How can we build an authentic image and personal credibility in business?
• First of all, be honest regardless of the uncertainty of a situation, crisis or temptation to leave certain things unsaid. Even the smallest lie can lead to gigantic disaster and destroy your image.
• If you make a commitment, keep it. Honesty and frankness are the basis of mutual trust. Your word is all that you have got. Each transaction should be treated as an possibility to enhance or ruin your reputation. If you know that you will not be able to keep the deadline, inform your client earlier. People are more ready to forgive shortcomings if they are informed in advance. Then they feel they have control over the situation.
• What if you are already facing a situation which has jeopardized your credibility? Admit you have made a mistake. Failures in business are inevitable. What counts is what you do to make up for them. It is more important to focus on the solution than to obsess about the problem itself. Learn from mistakes and try to predict the possible risks in a similar situation.
• Be reliable. The British company Warranty Direct measures the Reliability Index of cars. This index is calculated on the basis not only of the frequency of damages but also the cost and time of their repair. Chevrolet or Nissan are chosen more often than other brands not only because they are popular but because they have the highest reliability index.