One day, a mountaineer was on the way up a very high and dangerous mountain. This person was so proud, climbing it alone, believing that there was no need of help from anyone else.
By night, this person should have set up camp like other people would have done. But the person continued climbing, wanting to reach the summit quickly.
Suddenly, because of exhaustion, this person slipped. While free falling and thinking this is the end, this person suddenly felt a sharp, violent pull around the waist. Still alive, hanging in mid-air, the mountaineer was saved because of a rope that was attached to the belt!
In total darkness, while hanging on the rope, this person shouted, “God, if you are up there, SAVE ME!”
Suddenly, there was a voice that said, “If you believe that I can save you, do what I tell you to do… Cut the rope. Cut the rope, and let go.”
“Why?You must be crazy!” After a few moments, this person shouted again, and again. “Is there anyone else up there? Anyone?”
The next morning, other mountain climbers saw this person’s limp body, hanging by the rope, frozen to death.
What puzzled them more was that the dead body was only hanging 2 feet above safe ground. The more curious thing they saw about it was that he was only hanging 2 feet from the ground.
When we talk about relationships, whether personal or in business, or in the story above, what is the key word that we are actually referring to?
Just like the mountaineer, how do you know who, and how much to trust – the rope, or the ‘person’ you asked for help from? Would you trust your instinct completely, sticking only to what you know, or learn to trust your externals a bit more, or too much, to change and adapt to safety?
Without trust, a relationship cannot exist.
Without relationships, a business cannot exist.
Let’s say, I could be the most creative, innovative, pro-active, intelligent, up-to-date businesswoman, but if you don’t trust me, or believe that I have your best interest at heart, then why would you want to have any long-term business with me?
Then, how does anyone know to trust ‘just-right’?
Let’s face it. We cannot change other people. But, we can look at ourselves first so that others feel the trust from you, and soon follow suit. We can start by looking at the 3 common mistakes anyone can make when it comes to trust, regardless on a personal or business level, and what you can do about it:
1. Forgetting that we are human.
We make mistakes. We forget, and we don’t have all the answers. But when these happen with you and your clients, do not be afraid to let them know – it is also better that they know and hear it from you before they notice it first!
For example, you don’t really know how to solve the problem a client is asking you about. Tell them you are not sure, but you’re working on it and will report back as soon as you can. Simply said and done, it does not hurt (you, or others) to be honest!
2. Making a promise or agreement that you are not certain that you can fulfill.
Whether big or small a promise or agreement, you must determine you can, and cannot do, or what you need and don’t need before you make one. Sit down, with your partner, someone you trust, or a personal coach. Start listing and learning your own, and others’ strengths and weaknesses. Work from there – knowing what you have and don’t have, and learn to delegate responsibilities as well as create trust within your own business, because it is also just as important! (And make sure you credit whoever is responsible for the good work they have done, or be ready to forgive and motivate them to do better when they appear to be ‘only human’!)
3. I Care.
The word ‘care’ is an action verb. So don’t just say it, DO IT! Do things that show to your customers or clients that their best interests matter to you. For example, always be happy to over-explain when someone asks questions about your processes or costs. Create easy-to-understand invoices. Behave in ways that create trust, because we all know actions speak louder than words.
So, do you see now, the power of trust when it comes to balancing a long-lasting relationship with your partners and clients?
With trust, there will be word-of-mouth, and then earns loyalty, and then becomes the reason why the relationship is one that is worth having.
Are you aware of who and how much you trust to ‘get things done’?
What does ‘trust’ mean to you?And how has trust helped you to build long run relationships?