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How to build trust

Trust can’t be faked. So be clear, reliable, integer, helpful, competent and yourself

When building relationships, doing business for clients or with suppliers, working in a team or being a “Leader” of some kind it all comes down to one essential key element – TRUST.


  • Do you google a person you’ve just met to check if they have any skeletons in the closet?
  • Do you research the quality of a product before buying it even though your supplier claims that it’s the best?
  • Do you belief your new boss when he tells you he’s going to promote your interests and further your career after being overlooked for the last few years?


Well, to safeguard yourself and being skeptical is natural, especially if you’ve been disappointed or made bad experiences in the past.
We need trust.
We have to belief in the integrity, competence and consistency of someone (or something) before we build trust.
And trust isn’t something that comes naturally, it has to be earned and evolved over time.

So…are you trustworthy?

Even if you are, you will have to prove the fact before people are willing to be honest to you, follow you and take risks on your behalf.
You can’t just tell people that you are trustworthy (well you could but that would be somewhat odd). Instead you have to act in a manner that proves your trustworthiness.

Trust is one of the essential elements of high performance. If you want to enhance innovation, increase service, engagement and productivity you will need to build a foundation of trust.

So for how to build trust and achieve that high performance, here are 5 key behaviors that could help you out.


Be clear

When things are fuzzy and unclear people tend to mistrust due to a lack of transparency.
Missing clarity is a pool for needless speculations and generates fear and uncertainty.
Always be clear about your mission and expectations. Be open and transparent about what’s going on, leaving no room for harmful speculations and fear.


Do what you say you’ll do

It’s not about what you say, it’s about what you do.
To babble about what you will do and in the end do nothing (or do something completely different) will kill your reliance very quickly.
Always keep your word and do what you say you’ll do.


Help others

Always look for ways to help others achieve their goals. Especially when leading or working in a team, you will only be successful to the extent that the others are successful. Helping others will build trust and when you might be in need for help, you’ll have people stepping up and giving you a hand.


Be competent

Know what you’re talking about and be the best in your field. Evaluate your skills daily and always try to do a bit more then you are asked (or paid) for. Share your knowledge with others and build authority.


Admit you make mistakes

Let’s face it, we all make mistakes. Even if you are top-seeded in your field you will misdo something, somewhere.
Trying to cover up your mistake or even trying to blame someone else will only make you the ridiculous fraud people turn away from.
Admitting you made a mistake and taking full responsibility for all consequences might not be easy. But it’ll leave you being credible and make you more human to the people around you (we all make mistakes).

But remember: Try not to make the same mistakes over and over again. Learn from your mistakes and make it a part of your personal evaluation.


Be yourself, be human

Don’t try to be someone you’re not. You’re great the way you are and there’s no need for you to play a role or to fit in. Just be who you are and stay true to yourself.
Treat others the way you want to be treated and try to be understanding. Also share some personal insight on how you are (in private). You’re not a machine or a robot, your human.
When people connect with you emotionally and not only from a professional perspective, you clear the path to trustworthiness.



Trust can’t be faked. So be clear, reliable, integer, helpful, competent and yourself.
Think about who you trust and why you trust them. Start evolving your trustworthiness and perform high.

Have any ideas on building trust. Share them with a comment below or drop me a line.


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