If you are thinking of negotiating a contract with a stranger and are uneasy about trusting someone you don’t know and haven’t dealt with before, here are some suggestions.
- Trust is never automatic and needs to be earned. It can never be taken for granted and is the product of experience. Because trust is built incrementally each party has to take steps to prove to the other that he is worthy of trust.
- Typical steps that build trust range from simple, low cost gestures to more complex actions that involve more time and effort. Simple gestures such as making and keeping appointments may carry no financial cost. However, they tell the other party that you are business-like and keep your word. Business-like behaviour generates respect which leads to trust.
- Performing more complex, labour intensive actions that do carry a financial cost significantly increase trust because they are a more of a burden. Another party will recognize when his counterpart is putting himself out.
- Agreeing to provide necessary documents and financial data also generates trust. All the more so when compiling and collating them shows effort. Similarly, prompt payment of any required deposits or fees on a timely basis adds to trust.
- So remember, every step you take whether large or small that demonstrates your intent and reliability increases trust building it one layer at a time.