Reliability means people trust you to deliver on a promise – and in sales that’s business critical

„In total, 9 out of 10 commercial leaders say that being reliable – doing what was promised and delivering with excellence – is critical to stay competitive in the future”

The 24th November saw leading executives from around the world gather for this year’s Sales Conference. And as always, there was one big theme. And this year that theme was ‘trust’. But how do we build trust? In the ‘Future State of Trust’ report we identified 6 key dimensions critical to the process – and one of those was…’Reliability’

Why ‘Reliability’?

As our relationships – both social and business – become increasingly remote, with interactions more frequently taking place in digital forums, it becomes more critical than ever to ensure that we can trust those with whom we communicate. Trust is the new digital currency – or rather, it’s the security behind that currency. Think of it as the US Federal Reserve backing the value of the dollar – the reason that the dollar is the benchmark for financial stability is that we trust that there are tangible assets behind it to back up its valuation. So, with business interactions it is critical that we trust that those with whom we do business will reliably fulfil their obligations and promises, whether it be in terms of delivery or quality of service.

“Reliability means being accountable and consistently performing and delivering on what we promise. Will you be there when you are needed? If you agree to do something, are you dependable? Can you be counted on to complete things on time and deliver your products and services with excellence?”

The Future State of Trust 2022 Report

So how does a business show it’s reliable?

Reliability might sound like it should be a ‘given’ in business (and it really should) but how businesses project that image of reliability is critical to building client relationships. We can break this down in three ways, as determined by how the business leaders we interviewed ranked them in terms of importance:

  1. Consistently deliver on what we promise
    “When your customers buy a product or service, they have certain expectations. They want to be sure they receive the promised benefits. They want the products and services to be delivered on time and they want the expected result.” The Future State of Trust 2022 Report

    A Deloitte analysis has recently shown that delivering on brand promise is directly tied to overall brand strength and financial performance. In their research they found that the share prices of the top 100 global brands outperformed the S&P 500 by over 30 percent during a 12-year period.

  2. Provide excellent customer service
    “Poor customer service, or customer experience, will decrease customer loyalty and profitability. In the same way excellent customer service will boost retention and increase sales.” The Future State of Trust 2022 Report

    Companies who provide excellent customer service proactively can reduce inbound customer service call volumes by between 20-30 percent over a 12-month period, lowering customer service center operating costs by as much as 25 percent and boosting customer retention by an average of 3-5 percent.

  3. Deliver high quality products & services
    “In the study “B2B Elements of Value” by Bain & Co it turned out that product quality was by far the most important element to drive customer loyalty of all measured elements.” The Future State of Trust 2022 Report

    Our research confirms this, with almost 7 in 10 respondents saying that delivering high quality products and services is crucial to stay competitive in the future. Put simply, reliability is a critical, fundamental requirement for any organization that wants to achieve sustainable growth in the long term.

What next?

This year, Mercuri Research presented their annual report based on a global survey of over 1,000 business leaders. It dissected what we actually mean by trust, breaking it down into its component dimensions and pointing out the real world impact of building trust from a business perspective. It offers guidance and suggestions as to how business leaders can find new opportunities, create better, longer lasting client relationships and find new ways to establish long term growth. The report looks at the topic of ‘trust’ as a whole and also examines dimensions such as ‘reliability’ in granular detail.

“When your customers buy a product or service, they have certain expectations. They want to be sure they receive the promised benefits. They want the products and services to be delivered on time and they want the expected result. Over promising and under delivering is a sure recipe for failure and loss of trust and customer loyalty”

Henrik Larsson Broman

And with 99% of business leaders surveyed saying that “trust is critical to building long term relationships with clients”, how we get to that point is more important than ever. So, if you’d like to learn how to let your customers trust you – and build meaningful relationships with you – why not download the report or get in touch today?