Do you find it difficult to hold on to your clients, customers, business partners, shareholders? How cordial are your relations with your colleagues, boss or manager? How do people look upon you? Do they find you trustworthy and dependable? Are you struggling to build trust? If you are seeking answers to any of these questions then you should read on.
Making commitments and keeping them is a skill which helps strengthen relationships. A customer, employee, stakeholder, boss all trust your words and count on you to bring them into action. If you have made a promise, never break it, if you cannot keep a promise, then never commit.
Not sticking to your words is as bad as breaking the trust. It is the daily business, day to day activities that buid your trust. Every small thing matters, even if it means calling back a client, replying to a mail, keeping an appointment on time, clearing dues or making timely payments. People feel important if they get what they are looking for. They feel respected and valued if you give them what you promise. So if a manager or a team leader is presented with a timely report as per the submission deadline, he will recognise your talent and appreciate your sincerity, if a product or service is provided to the customer as per his liking and requirements, he will not question your credibility. If a colleague in need is offered support and help, he will not forget your generosity.
Trust generates trust. Trust is mutual. Believe in people, in their capacities. their potential, their efficiency. Never try to take advantage of their vulnerability. Today they are weak, tomorrow they may not be. Nurturing relationships whether professional or personal is based on consistency, reliability and concern. It is easy to make new contacts but it is difficult to hold and retain them. Relationships should not be taken for granted. You have to devote ample time and energy to keep them going. You have to keep evaluating and re-evaluating your relationships to rule out misunderstandings, doubts and differences.
You have to be careful while speaking. Think twice before making any commitments. Ponder, reflect, analyse the validity of your words and statements . Question yourself. Do you really mean them? Can you truly uphold your promise? Is your plan, suggestion, solution or advice feasible? Are you genuine in your response or simply showing off to get temporary attention? Are you aiming at short_term gains or focusing on long_term achievements? If you have the slightest element of doubt in your mind then restrict yourself from making false commitments. Not being true to your words tarnishes your image. It ruins all your future prospects and spoils your relations.
If you feel that you can accomplish a particular task but you are not sure of it, it is always good to be honest. State your concerns and present a realistic picture of the situation instead of keeping the other person in the dark. Raising false hope is almost similar to being dishonest. Hope is the foundation of all human action. If you steal them of hope you shake the very foundation on which they stand.
Don’t let people think of you as a hopeless jerk. Win their confidence by adhering to the basic principles of fostering strong relations.
Here are 7 basic principles of building lasting relationships:
Establish trust: Trust is built through mutual respect and concern. Establish your credibility by being genuine, honest and respectful.
Keep your words: Maintain coherence in your words and action for winning the confidence of your people. Your actions speak stronger than your words.
Respond to situations: Act in response to the needs and requirements of people. Do not blindly pursue what you think is correct. Step into the shoes of your people to identify their perspective. Respond to specific needs rather than applying general principles.
Show support and involvement: Your support and active involvement with the people around you assures them of your interest in them and their activities. Lack of involvement creates distance and scope for doubt.
Identify common interests, goals and values: Sharing and experiencing common interests, goals and values brings you together and helps you share a common platform. This promotes togetherness and team work.
Be honest even behind the back: Speak positively of people you are associated with. Do not belittle or demean them behind their back. Learn to keep their secrets. Respect their privacy, we all are vulnerable.
Personalise your relations: Do ensure to greet them or meet them beyond work. Meet over coffee or talk over lunch. Call your people to wish them on special occasions. Meeting beyond work encourages a free and relaxed discussion. It helps to understand the perspectives, experiences and views of the people more closely.
Build a strong network, value your connections.