Is it their education? No.
Is it their experience?
Their communication skills?
If you want to know the single biggest factor in the success of some 2,600 business leaders, it’s their reliability.
Elena Botelho and Kim Powell, authors of the bestselling book “The CEO Next Door,” conducted 13,000 hours of interviews with leaders in an attempt to determine their most prevalent character traits, and reliability was the clear winner.
“According to Botelho’s and Powell’s research, CEOs known for the quality of reliability — delivering on what is expected of you and what you promise to do — were 15 times more likely to be considered high-performing,” Inc.com contributor Justin Bariso wrote.
Bariso offered four steps for building a reputation as someone who’s highly reliable:
- Develop a “reliability mindset.” Look for opportunities to demonstrate your reliability.
- Set realistic expectations. “When you routinely fail to fulfill your promises, people stop trusting you — you also stop trusting yourself,” Bariso wrote. “On the other hand, when you pause, plan and ensure you have the resources to deliver on your promises, you put yourself in control of the results.”
- Be on time. Doing so is the most powerful habit of reliability, Botelho and Powell say, because when you show up on time, it tells others that they’re important to you.
- Practice reliable habits daily. Reliability is only reliability when it’s consistent, so work on being reliable. Every. Single. Day.
“In a world where most people fail to deliver,” Bariso wrote, “you’ll be surprised how far you can go when you simply do what you say you’re going to do.”