How to Build Credibility

For those trying to establish credibility with co-workers, focus on the 3 C’s:

1. Competence – the technical, managerial, or leadership capabilities of an individual (e.g., knowledge, skills and abilities). Questions to ask yourself:

  • Do I have the necessary knowledge, skills, and abilities to be productive? How do I know?
  • Do I execute? Do I hold myself and/or others accountable for getting results?
  • Am I efficient and productive? Do I deliver in a timely fashion?
  • Are others convinced of my competence? How do I know?

2. Communication – how an individual shares information and interacts with those around them. This can include various communication skills, among them: listening, verbal and non-verbal behavior, how information is delivered (adapting to various communication styles), openness to feedback, etc. Questions to ask yourself:

  • Am I a good reflective listener?
  • What are my non-verbal behaviors and how do they affect my message?
  • Am I able to adapt my message to address varied audiences?
  • Are those around me getting the information they need? How do I know?

3. Character – the behavioral factors that lead to trust. These behaviors can include how decisions are made (i.e., self-serving vs. in others’ best interest), how forthright an individual is about their mistakes/actions (i.e., own up to mistakes vs. blame or excuses), honest communication, and delivering on promises. Questions to ask yourself:

  • Do I make decisions or act in others’ best interest? Do I look for solutions that result in mutual benefit?
  • Do I own up to my mistakes?
  • Do I deliver on my promises? Do I do what I say I will?

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