Building Trust
vital for a long-term relationship

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Build Trust

Trust is something that is earnt, but this is the funny part, you can help yourself to build the trust you want others to see in you. How can I achieve this? That will be everyone’s first question.

Whilst I am not going to claim that it’s simple, it is straightforward. Use the words that build trust, the words that make people want to gravitate towards you. To do this, make sure the words you use, work for you rather than against you. This means using words and phrases that show you are positive, professional and likable. People rarely trust people they don’t like, cannot bond with and who are too much like the others.

Developing a positive, professional and friendly approach improves your credibility and the trust others see in you.

Please understand that there is much more to this than simply using the right words, your non-verbal communication is also important. Developing a track-record of being honest and trustworthy also matters. Conversely, being dishonest and doing untrustworthy things will have a much bigger influence on how people perceive you. So, always be honest, treat others fairly and above all, smile. Make sure that your tone of voice matches your body language and words. Telling someone you like them through gritted teeth and with distain in your voice is not going to build trust, as the three elements are misaligned. Make sure that you are authentic in your actions, words, expressions, tone and non-verbal communication.

Tell Me What You Can Do

The first method is to make sure that you tell people what you can do, by being positive. Contrast this with what most people tend to do, which is tell other people what they cannot do.

Let’s look at a few examples:

  • “I don’t know” change that to something more positive like “I’ll find out for you”.
  • “I’m too busy at the moment” how about you try “I can do that on Wednesday this week”.
  • “I can’t help you at the moment” look at it another way “I’ll get someone who can help you”.


If we compare the second more proactive, friendly and helpful version of the reply to the more common version, we can see that it helps build trust. This trust comes from the can-do attitude and it shows. Not only are you responding positively, you are meeting the needs of the originator. Which, of course, is what they wanted in the first place.

Show Me You Are Positive

You may not be aware, but phrasing things in a negative way, rather than in a positive way makes it harder for people to understand the meaning of your communication. The extra effort in attempting to understand, makes the interaction harder and this makes them more likely to go elsewhere. This implies, instead of telling them what you don’t want to happen, you tell them what you would like to happen.

Once again, let’s look at some examples:

  • “Please don’t be late” when positively expressed could be “Please be on time”.
  • “Don’t waste resources” could be changed to “Use the resources wisely”.
  • “Please don’t leave the kitchen in a mess” when transformed could be “Please keep the kitchen clean”.


I hope you can see the difference when phrasing things positively rather than negatively. Not only is it easier to read and understand, but it puts forward a positive result. You are asking what you want to happen not what you don’t. As a bonus tip, when running late, don’t think “I don’t want the lights to be red.” Make that a positive thought and say to yourself “I want the lights to be green”. One is positive and the other negative.

Remove the Waffle - Verbal Hedges

When we speak, and this applies much more to spoken communication than to written, there is a tendency to include indecisive words. In all cases, they are unnecessary and usually dilute the message.

In keeping with our theme, some example includes:

  • Maybe
  • Basically
  • Almost

When used they reduce the impact of the statement, which implies the speaker either doesn’t believe what they are saying or are in some way distancing themselves from their words.


If you spend the time and effort to make a statement, then stand behind it. Make sure that what you say is as strong and powerful as possible. The last thing you want is for the verbal hedges to infer that your thoughts are unclear or confused. Being clear in your thinking and communications puts forward exactly the impression you want to convey when seeking to gain trust.

Take Away

The takeaway from this article is that:

  • Non-verbal
  • Vocal tone
  • Spoken words

All interact directly in all spoken communications. So, ensure that the three elements align correctly and that the non-verbal, the tone and words all match.

Practice smiling as much as possible and always smile before answering the phone. The change in your facial muscles will help the conversation progress with better outcomes for you and the other party. Did I mention smile!

Use positive language and tell me what you can do for me. After all, I want my problem solved, my questions answered, etc. if you cannot do it yourself, find someone who can. That way, you were helpful, friendly, courteous and most of all you were professional and started to build trust with the person you are interacting with.

These lessons apply when making podcasts as well as videos for both promotional and educational purposes.

Katherine Says

As we all know, trust takes time and effort to build but, as shown in the article, there are steps you can take right now to begin to build that trust more easily and quickly. Doing what you say you will do, when you said you will do it, goes a long way to becoming reliable. This will then, over time, lead to trust.

It is worth mentioning that using the wrong words and acting in a shady way, will make building trust more difficult. Which is not what you are looking for.

The important thing here is to ensure that you use the built trust when you become your potential clients’ guide. All too often, a superficial knowledge of a subject hampers your attempts to be that expert guide. Having built trust first, puts you into a position where you can demonstrate your superior skills and knowledge.

Contact me today to see how we can help you build trust with your clients.