Are you the one management turns to first each time there is a task to be done? Are you known as the person who gets things done at work or do people avoid giving you work or dread working with you because they know you cannot be counted on?
When you make plans with your family or friends, do they instantly know you won’t actually turn up for those plans? Do they already know you will cancel?
If the above questions made you uncomfortable, you might a want to ask yourself – Am I reliable?
Recently I got thinking about how credible and effective I am as a brand and this am led to me asking myself the above questions. Dr Annie smith said and i love this quote “you need to take time to think about the things you are thinking about”.
The answers I got were not quite as good as I expected and I began working on myself; how I come across to others so as to improve my credibility.
Authenticity is an absolute when it comes to personal branding. As an individual it is important to be seen as a trustworthy, dependable, reliable person. Susan Hodgkinson, Principal of the Personal Brand Company says in her book “The Leader’s Edge: Using Personal Branding to Drive Performance and Profit” these characteristics of a well-managed personal brand are evident in the responses you give or get to the above mentioned questions on persona.
It has been established that people buy from, consult with, and become friends with, people they can trust. While trust isn’t gained over night for most cases, reliability is the fastest and easiest way to gain the trust of all you want to affect.
To be reliable simply means to be dependable, counted on, efficient, productive.
In my quest to salvage my not so bad but could be better status, I began studying to tips on how to become reliable. I will be sharing them with you.
Here are some thoughts on how to cultivate reliability:
Ø Keep your promises and engagements
Say what you mean and mean what you say. Take time to think about the things you engage yourself to do and ensure that you do them. Don’t be the one who when anyone thinks about they give up before approaching you because they already know you are going to fail or make excuses.
I am not saying there aren’t genuine reasons for delay or cancellation. Everyone cancels the odd thing here and there. People get sick and need to cancel. Cancelling every now and then is normal. BUT cancelling all the time, will simply annoy the other party and make them less inclined to ask you next time. Eventually they may stop asking you all together, particularly if you are known for cancelling at the last minute.
If you are working on a project and you need to pull out or change direction, be upfront with your coworkers. Let them know as soon as possible about your intentions.
Ø Deliver on time
If you commit to a deadline, you need to stick to it. I have been called a workaholic but I believe with the better understanding I have now, I am just working on being a credible or reliable person. I usually put myself in the place of the other party expecting results from me and I am certain I won’t respond quite nicely if the deadline is not met.
Not only should we hit our deadlines but we should also strive to deliver on budget and high quality product or service. Delivering early also, will even add more value than the customer expected – even better.
If we constantly deliver late or take too long to complete a particular task people will start to think we are unreliable.
Ø Be ready to help out
It can be very frustrating to have a lot of work to do and don’t have someone to help you out. Be the person who will be ready to lend a helping hand even when you are not asked. When a project is due sometimes it takes all hands on deck to get the work done. If you help someone else with their project, it’s highly likely that they will help you in return when the time comes.
If you want to be viewed as reliable help people when you can.
Ø Be on Time
I can boldly say this is an area where many people fail. I am one of those people who tries to always arrive early for appointments because I hate being late.
Make sure you turn up for meetings, appointments, occasions and on time – don’t keep people waiting and distort their schedules by being late. Respect other people’s time. It is also important to show up to work on time. People who are constantly strolling in late for work every morning will not be viewed as reliable.
Ø Don’t lie out of fear or pressure
Many of us face embarrassing situations and the first reflex is to tell a “white lie”. Maybe for fear of being reprimanded, or hurting the feeling of the other party.
Nothing screams unreliable more than someone who lies. Integrity and honesty are vital for people to be able to count on you.
Do not make empty promises. People will generally give you some leeway, however if you are caught out constantly lying your co-workers will lose trust in you. Be honest enough to relate the situation as it is in all calm and quiet.
Ø Don’t forget what you have to do
All of us have so much to remember every day it’s just ridiculous – we all forget things from time to time. I am an example of someone who because of many things to do, I tend at times to forget some.
Despite the above you want to keep this sort of behavior at work and even in relationships to a minimum.
Write things down to remember them. Keep lists if they work for you or write notes into your calendar or whatever electronic device you use to keep track of your tasks, appointments and work load. Personally i use reminders and alarms!
Don’t let those who depend on you down by forgetting things.
Ø Be loyal all the way
You have solid plans with someone and cancel at the last minute. Then, later they find out you went on to do something else with someone else.
Basically, you dumped them because you got a better offer. This does not make you reliable even in the eyes of the person you ran to. He is not certain you will stick with him either if something much better presents itself. It is actually a great way to build resentment if you do this often.
Building a strong and authentic personal brand, comes in bits and pieces, the more you discover who you are the more authentic your promise of value becomes and the more people can trust and rely on you.
For a quick start on the reliability check, visit;
I found this website online and after taking the basic test; it jump started my quest for improvement.
Please let me know what happens.