Developing Trust: The Key to Success and Happiness in 2018

If you carefully examine your relationships, what separates the good ones from the really great ones? What is the secret sauce that makes the great ones really sing? What makes you feel good and comfortable with an other person? What hurts so badly when it is betrayed?

I am going to be bold here… trust.  I see the common denominator to all successful relationships as this simple (but emotionally complex) 5-letter word: trust.  Some of the definitions are particularly interesting:


  1. reliance on the integrity, strength, ability, surety, etc. of a person or thing; confidence.
  2. a person on whom or thing on which one relies.
  3. the obligation or responsibility imposed on a person in whom confidence or authority is placed.
  4. to believe.

Trust is the characteristic upon which respect and loyalty are based. Without trust, there is negative tension that erodes possibilities. Trust is critical for both personal and business relationships.

For our purpose today, let’s talk about the business context. People want to work with people they connect with and like. They also want to work with people whom they can trust to help them. In the spirit of the new year, let’s set the intention of trust in 2018. Easy to say, but not always easy to accomplish. So, let’s outline some tips to earning someone’s trust.

  • Be Honest, Always.  In our current sad time politically, Americans are understandably becoming less trusting. However, we must stay the course. It is up to us, as individuals, to keep the spirit of trust alive. The only way to do this is to be upfront and honest. How do you show someone that you are honest?  Always tell the truth. I am not saying to be brutal and hurt feelings, but rather find ways deliver the truth in a constructive, helpful way. Simply put:  don’t lie.
  • Be Available.  Being available also means being present in whatever way your client needs, whether its’ physical, emotional or virtual. They need to know that you are reliable and looking out for their greater good.
  • Be Consistent. Always deliver the best products and results you possibly can. By modeling consistent behavior, you show people what you are made of and what they can expect to receive.
  • Be Helpful. Ask thoughtful questions and clear pathways to help people reach goals. Genuinely help people because it feels like the right thing to do. If you nurture mutually beneficial relationships through open and honest communication, helpfulness will always come back to you in spades.
  • Do what you say you will do. Don’t promise something you can’t deliver. However, you should strive to go above and beyond whenever possible. This goes back to the honesty rule. Unrealistic promises will always hurt you. If you continually do what you say you are going to do, people will come back when they need your help again. If you can’t deliver what you thought you could? Be honest. Tell them how you miscalculated the task and tell them what you can do.

There are so many good reasons to build trust, both personally and professionally. Building honesty, consistency and helpfulness into your daily existence is an excellent way to lead your professional business success.

Happy New Year! I wish you all the very best 2018  has to offer!