Last week was a tough one for all of us. Be strong, stay healthy, and keep looking for the silver lining – while grounded for a few weeks, I went to my daughter’s soccer game and my son’s lacrosse game last week – the last one for a while as their school is shut down and going remote for a couple of weeks.
In an effort to keep us moving forward together, I thought I’d begin sharing a new series with #CoCreateTip Of the Week.
Particularly given the current COVID-19, how you carry yourself, the language you use, and how you engage, and influence others will reinforce and enhance or dilute your credibility, repute, and trust with every relationship.
To build on that ideas, here are ten behaviors that build trust in a co-creation relationship:
- Add value in every interaction – give them a reason to look forward to hearing from you, immediately returning your calls/emails, and wanting to see you (virtually). How can you get creative in continuing to deliver value? They can’t meet in person; let’s turn on our webcams and meet virtually to review insightful data, introduce them to other relationships, and keep the discussions moving forward.
- Show integrity at all times – it manifests itself in a lot of small things, starting with straight answers, open and honest feedback, consistency between what you say and what you do. I’ve never cared for the grapevine, the watercooler, or other similar nonsense. Candor is all about saying what others can’t or won’t.
- Demonstrate long-term relationship orientation vs. there for a quick transaction! Reassure people you are here for the long-term growth and viability of their business. Send them something unique or interest to read or watch today! Call them often to learn what they’re hearing/seeing and share those across your relationships.
- Demonstrate that your opinion can be trusted – is it well thought out before you share it, email it, ask for it, suggest it, or otherwise recommend it? Pick up the phone and compare notes with your colleagues. Share ideas and leverage your relationships to stress-test your ideas, perspectives, and unique approaches.
- Get introduced/recommended by a trusted source – every introduction is a referral and a litmus test of the relationship. The relationship between you and the intro/recommending source, and their relationship with the person they’re introducing/recommending you to! Don’t leave either to chance! Get proactive in introducing equal business stature to one another.
- Instill trust in your relationships, through your personal brand – beyond your organization’s reputation, what’s your brand? Build that brand daily, reinforce its value, let others experience it, consistently. Touch base with your relationships with definitive value-add.
- Get diverse, third-party endorsements, often – others talking about how they’re better off because of you reinforces your value-add in the mind and heart of the relationships you have and the ones you want. Great time to capture and share testimonials, collaborate with partners, and leverage others to reinforce your value-add.
- Prepare extraordinarily for every meeting – stop winging it; even if you’re a seasoned pro – that’s the problem. If you’ve been at this job for an extended period of time, you’ve become complacent. Get back to the basics and pretend it’s your first day on the job. How would you prepare for that call with a really important relationship differently?
- Practice complete disclosure and transparency – when there is an absence of information, people make things up (in their minds, which transfers to their behaviors). When you’re open, transparent, forthright, and candid, people see it and behave accordingly. Always use good judgment, take the high road, and stay positive.
- Do something clearly in the relationship’s interest, not just yours – I get it, you have a number to hit or a project plan to complete, board meeting to prepare for, and upcoming earnings call. If you do the right things, the outcomes you seek will come. Start by advocating for your relationships (internally and externally) to earn their trust first!
If you missed our Relationship-Centric Growth Webinar last Friday, 3/13, the link to watch the reply and download the material is up. We also have several others scheduled in the coming weeks.
Stay healthy, positive, and focus on that which you can control – your health, your relationships, and your attitude. Best, Nour