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Laura Bedford
Educator and Inspirational Coach
Bloomingdale, Illinois
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Building Trust in Relationships

Here is a list of ten ways to build trust in your business relationships. - Be respectful at all times.
Written May 19, 2011, read 4876 times since then.
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I am presently the client in the middle of a business relationship. Pest control. We gave our trust to an individual who worked hard to earn the business and offered a guarantee. It's a heavenly opportunity to remember this world is a dream and that everyone is doing their very best.

The carpenter ants still reign. After leaving three gentle messages about two days apart, the individual was reached this morning. The exchange was short and dismissive saying they will have someone out in a few days. Always wanting to give folks the benefit of the doubt...when given almost any reason at all for a delay my heart melts...no one ever called again or came out.

When you approach a business relationship, what matters most to you? Are you concerned about the client's well being, serving a need, income, sharing your passion, forming a partnership based on mutual respect, having fun? At the core of most business relationships, there is a desire to fill a perceived need and there is an expectation that we will benefit.

Here is a list of ten ways to build trust in business relationships.

  • Be respectful at all times. Contemplate what respect and trust means to you and give 100%. 
  • Be clear about your interest and your objective. Don't be afraid to say what you need and to listen to the needs of others. Have fun with this! You might be surprised what comes of a truly open exchange.
  • Always assume the best, even at the risk of appearing naive. The greatest leaders do not care about being right or wrong. They care about making a positive difference.
  • If you desire the trust of another be sure that you are worthy of that trust. Ask good questions. Respond with honesty to the questions of others. Don't be afraid to say, "I don't know," or to call with an explanation for why a project is not proceeding according to a projected timeline. Recommend the services of another if you feel the fit is not a good one.
  • The customer is always right even if they are wrong. You can always leave a client if you are uncomfortable just as they can withdraw their support from you. If you part ways, separate in gratitude for the journey.
  • Gentle listening and well intentioned silence are far more powerful than words. You may not gain a client today, but their trust is you is felt and acknowledged by the universe in ways we can barely imagine. Kindness always returns to its source.
  • Don't assume. Remember that you are never upset for the reason you think. Always look deeper. All misunderstandings have, well, a misunderstanding at their core. Do your best and let the rest be okay.
  • Embrace all the ways that abundance fills your life.
  • Trust that all things that come to pass make us stronger, wiser and more compassionate.
  • Trust that you are trustworthy even if you make a mistake. We all make mistakes. Get up, dust yourself off, believe in your value and what you have to offer and others will believe in you.


May all of us feel the power of building trust in all areas of our lives.

Learn more about the author, Laura Bedford.

Comment on this article

  • Photographer 
Seattle, Washington 
Ingrid Pape-Sheldon
    Posted by Ingrid Pape-Sheldon , Seattle, Washington | May 28, 2011

    Thank you! I really appreciate this topic.

    Of course, we all want to have the trust of our clients and believe we do everything to earn that trust. But sometimes we are so involved in our own doing that we forget to look at interactions through the eyes of our client.

    It's good to step back from time to time and look at interactions in detail. We might discover that when we were upset we were not the "victim" as we might perceive ourselves in that situation, but caused the upsetting behavior down the way, without being aware of our own actions. At the core is often a fear to clearly express things, I believe.

    The more clarity for ourself what we do in business and transparency for our client, the less upsetting situations later.

  • Educator and Inspirational Coach 
Bloomingdale, Illinois 
Laura Bedford
    Posted by Laura Bedford, Bloomingdale, Illinois | May 28, 2011

    Wise words Ingrid. Life is such an adventure, and it's so easy to see that everyone's always doing their best. Each day I am amazing by the flowing aspect of all relations and why it is so important to never take anything personally. Thankfully, I learned from a young age that I remain more peaceful when I assume the best and to not get hard on myself when things don't work out as imagined. In this case, I arranged for the work for a friend's home, so my guilt came in big time when the contractor didn't deliver as expected.

  • Writing & Publishing Coach, Business & Marketing Consultant 
Bellevue, Washington 
Deborah Drake
    Posted by Deborah Drake, Bellevue, Washington | May 29, 2011

    Laura,

    This is a fine, fine article in everyway, expressing wisdom we must be reminded of over and over again. We all go unconscious under stress, don't we (myself included)?...and I am ever thankful for the guides in my life and the messages they offer with heart and simple truth. Today that includes you!

    Your illustration is one we can all relate to having been in one or both of the roles at points in our life. For me, cultivating awareness is an ongoing activity that is part of my "Business Plan."

    For a time I worked for Dale Carnegie: I learned the lesson of focusing on being trustworthy, again and again through the Human Relations Course and the integration of the 30 principles that Dale Carnegie drafted in a year (and took then ten years to write the classic book that remains bestseller for a reason-as he found stories to illustrate the principles). He was drawing upon classic advice from long ago...repackaging and adding to it.

    I love your article for this same reason!

    What is truly true for me is that Building Trust in all our relationships is key and takes ongoing work.

    Given some current projects in my own work/life, I thank you for this article which is just in time!

    Deborah Drake

    Authentic Writing Provokes

  • Certified Professional Coach 
Duvall, Washington 
Nina Durfee, ACC
    Posted by Nina Durfee, ACC, Duvall, Washington | May 30, 2011

    This is a great 10 list. I appreciate the reminder that "you are never upset for the reason you think." Kudos.

  • Educator and Inspirational Coach 
Bloomingdale, Illinois 
Laura Bedford
    Posted by Laura Bedford, Bloomingdale, Illinois | Jun 03, 2011

    Thanks Deborah and Nina! I love your thoughts. I'm always striving to remember such things, and to forgive interesting circumstances when things go a little wacky. Yay to recognizing we're never upset for the reason we think! Have a great day!

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