These two attributes present one of the greatest challenges to small businesses. Let’s first look at some simple definitions for these two words according to Webster:
- Trust – to place confidence
- Credibility-reliance on the truth or reality of something
I combine those two definitions; trust and credibility are characteristics of people that are honest, forward-looking, inspiring and competent.
Ok, but the question still remains, how do I get from here to there? Unfortunately, there is not a quick fix answer. Too often the main focus for a small business is to get the product or service to the market place without building the necessary “trust and credibility” foundation that is necessary for sustainable and profitable growth.
The four characteristics mentioned above, honesty, forward-looking, inspiring and competent, must be the things through which we measure all our business activities. Start by taking a look at your personal story. Does it convey those four characteristics? Next look at all your marketing material from web-site to printed material, to your social media; is it presenting the same image?
This can be carried further to the way we dress, the way we talk to people and the way we listen.
Plagiarizing and modifying a saying from Zig Ziglar,”If someone were to follow you around for 24 hours, would they be able to see those characteristics in you?”
Going several steps further, does your business support group exude those characteristics? Are you involved in helping others through your volunteer efforts? Do you associate with others who have those characteristics?
Building trust and credibility for your business is not a onetime effort, but an on-going daily effort. The desired results will come sooner than you expected if you live your life and grow your business with those four attributes as a foundation.
What most people tend to forget is that we have unbelievable control over our destiny. Bill Gove