These two words go hand in hand. If you think someone is credible – for whatever reason – you are likely to trust them. Credibility is the culmination of a wide range of factors which build the overall impression in the mind of the observer, including qualifications, competence, reputation and performance. When experienced, it is self-reinforcing and ultimately enhances the predictability of the individual concerned – it builds trust.
Positive Indicators: Each party in the relationship is likely to…
- Tell the truth and the whole truth (are open with each other).
- Share sensitive information (even if this could put them at a disadvantage).
- Have no secrets (obviously within commercial boundaries).
- Be predictable and reliable, or even dependable.
- Do what they say they’re going to do.
- Give bad news early and avoid “surprises”.
Negative indicators include people…
- Being hesitant, cautious and a little suspicious of the other person.
- Lying and withholding information when it is to their personal advantage.
- Misleading others about their real agenda.
- Creating false deadlines, or moving them for their own convenience.
- Asking different people until they get the answer they want to hear.
- Criticising behind each other’s backs.
- Providing inaccurate, misleading or false feedback.
Spend a few moments thinking about a significant relationship, perhaps with a business partner or another team.
- What evidence is there for the positive and the negative?
- What is the balance like between the indicators overall?
- Are there any differences between the two teams?
- What can you do to increase the level of trust and credibility?