Regardless of how good our intentions may be, people will always have their reasons for distrusting us. And when that happens, it may not be clear to us what those reasons are, or what we can do to address them.
People who are experienced at building trust and loyalty with others know that there are words and phrases we use every day that influence the way others perceive us, whether we realize it or not. And they know what words to say—and how to say them—to build trust and loyalty.
Here are 7 secrets for building trust and loyalty in your own relationships—both on the job, and in your personal life. The sooner you start applying them, the sooner you’ll positively affect the people around you.
1. Use the word “Frankly”
Starting a sentence with the word “Honestly” can actually make you come across as the exact opposite—subconsciously alerting others to be on guard about the words that will follow. Using “Frankly” however allows you to say what you really mean—and encourages others to believe that too.
2. Qualify your statements
When you’re offering a point of view on a specific event or situation that occurred, make sure you qualify what you’ve said with the words, “This is my side of it.” Indicating that you’re only telling what you personally know to be the truth prevents you from being potentially seen as dishonest by others, and gives the impression that you’re more trustworthy.
3. Begin sentences with “I’ve personally found that…”
Again, making clear that you’re offering a perspective gained from your own experience or your own thoughts ultimately makes your point of view much easier to trust than others who claim their perspective is the only correct one.
4. End your explanations with “That’s really all I know.”
Using this phrase shows listeners that there’s really nothing else you could accurately add to what’s already been said—you’ve offered all the information you have.
5. Preface your phrases with “I truly/genuinely thought…”
Presenting something as a thought or opinion, rather than as fact, is a valuable way of demonstrating you’re trustworthy. In fact, people might even be more likely to believe you as a result.
6. When accused of a negative action, don’t get emotional or lose control
Giving an emotional or heated response in the face of a negative accusation might seem like the right thing to do, especially when we feel strongly about what we’re being accused of. But, in reality, giving a solid, level-headed response is actually much more effective in getting someone to believe your answer.
7. Express your side of things
It can often be more effective to simply state what you’d like the other person to do in a conversation so that you’re more transparent. Saying something like “I just want you to say…” shows the person you’re talking to what you’re looking for, and they’re much more likely to trust that.