I was looking through my library of business personal development books the other day and came across “The Trusted Advisor” by David Maister, Charles Green and Robert Galford. I have not read this book since my days working for a software company in their services division. Although printed in 2002 the concepts are all very valid and apply as much today as they did when the book was written. Perhaps more so now if you want to differentiate yourself from the crowd.
The book talks about what is needed to build trust with customers and potential clients. Regardless if that client or customer is in another company , an individual or another department within the company you work for without Trust you have nothing.
This book gives some fundamentals on how to build trust with your client or customer regardless of what role you are in.Why mention in here, well it has some very valid points on building Trust and in any business building trust is paramount. In the book there is a five stage process to build trust.
It is very similar to Attraction Marketing Techniques and having the mindset to focus on the other person, understand their problem and offer them solutions and not just try pitch them your product or service. With Attraction Marketing you want people to come to you first, as they trust you and they know you can help them find a solution.
Importance of Mindset in Build Trust
Before we discuss the 5 steps to in building trust lets quickly look at the mindset that is needed. Firstly you need to focus on the other person.
You’ll have more fun and success by focusing on helping other people achieve their goals than you will by focusing on your own goals
Some people think this sounds strange, but if the customer gets what they want the chances are you will get what you want.
You need to be self-confident in your interactions and have the strength not to jump to the answer (sales pitch) too quickly.
You cannot get embroiled in the culture of taking credit and giving blame but rather be focused on the matter at hand and getting the results that are needed, the book describes this as Ego-Strength.
The trait of curiosity is all important, without curiosity you will never fully understand your clients problems or needs.
The final piece of mindset is professionalism and I don’t mean wearing a suit and looking professional but by aligning yourself with your client to improve their situation.
The 5 Steps to Build Trust
So the 5 steps to building trust are detailed below and I have seen these in many guises but fundamentally this is where you need to be to have a customer Know, Like and Trust you.
Engage – By engaging you need to ensure you customer is willing to talk and has an issue that is important for them to solve right now. You can talk all day long but they need to have the motivation to take action.
Listen – You have 2 ears and 1 mouth use them in no more than that proportion, you need to listen and understand what your customer needs and understand their pain.
Frame – By framing the problem, the problem or issue is defined which helps build trust and allows you to understand how you can help or propose solutions.
Envision – This is not providing a solution but understanding the end goal and what the solutions should look like. This is a collaborative process with your customer.
Commit – During this phase you and the customer are understanding exactly what is going to be needed to be done to achieve that goal.
This provides a trust driven process to solving the customers problem and will lead you to achieving the goal of providing a solution for the customer.
Regardless of the Business Opportunities you are pursuing from Corporate America down to the home based business there are great nuggets in this book and I would recommend anybody to give it a read.
To be successful you need to be aligned with your customer and they need to Know Like and Trust you. Without these you are never going to grow your business with a client. You will be far more successful in your business if you follow these ideas, regardless of what badge you put on it!