We spend a lot of time discussing credibility with our clients. And we always like to tell them that no matter how good a speaker you are, no matter how strong your message, voice and presence are, if your audience does not find you credible then we can’t help you. Credibility is everything. To quote Dwight Eisenhower:
“When you have credibility, nothing else matters. When you don’t have credibility, nothing else matters.”
So how do you build it? All day, every day, from a thousand little things. Think about a few questions like these:
Are you easy to work with? Or are you hard to work with?
Do you take feedback well? Do you give feedback well?
Do you deliver what you say you will deliver? Do you meet your deadlines? Do you produce results?
Do you show up on time, prepared? Do you listen? Do you treat people with respect?
How well do you communicate? Do you respect other people’s time? Or do you waste it because you can’t get to the point?
Your answers to questions like these, and many more like these, will determine how much credibility you actually have. It is hard to quantify credibility, but think about the people in your organization for a moment. As you scroll through names in your head, think about whether you find that person credible or not. If they presented something to you, would you believe them? If they asked for your support, would you provide it?
Now that you are done thinking about whether your colleagues are credible, think about this. Do you think they find you credible? What about your customers? Ruminate on that for a while.
Credibility is gained or lost every single day based on the things we do, or don’t do. Think about the things you do all day every day. And then think about the next time you need to stand up in front of your colleagues or customers and ask them to buy/suppport/agree with something. And if you don’t get the outcome you want, spend a little more time thinking about your credibility.
This is not an easy topic. But credibility is the key to the castle, ladies and gentlemen.
Have a great day.