Sunday, November 05, 2006

Curious about Credibility: How Important Is It? How Easy Is It to Lose? How Much Do You Have?

For every credibility gap there is a gullibility gap.” - Richard Cobden

I want a fingerprint of my own and I want credibility, and that's all I want. I just want some substance to my existence.” - Lisa Marie Presley

Yes, I am curious to know how important credibility is to you. Once someone, or a business, loses its credibility, how hard is it to regain it? And, finally, do you have credibility?

I am not going to get into politics here, but I do realize that, because of politics, and what the media grabs onto (you will find several quotations about the media in the following copy), many readers, listeners, and lookers have lost faith in the credibility of politicians, clergy, corporations, and the media itself.

In my “Portfolio Career” of many different careers, I am focused upon creating and keeping the professional credibility of someone who can handle all my careers.

I often ask myself what makes someone and/or a business lose its credibility for me? Some reasons include:
  • Catching them in a falsehood or doing something that lacks integrity (unfortunately, the Internet offers lots of examples).
  • Even though they profess to “care about the customer” their customer service is lousy.
  • A program, teleseminar, and/or e-book is poorly done and does not live up to its stated benefits and/or features.
  • Their e-mails and website content are filled with typos and poor grammar (a few common mistakes are expected, I feel, but a huge number raise a red flag).
  • They don’t have a website or a blog. Or, if they do, it is poorly presented (this, I know, is one of my biases, because I do website development and design and can’t imagine being without).

What makes someone and/or a business lose its credibility for you?

Let’s hear about credibility from the experts:

  • All credibility, all good conscience, all evidence of truth come only from the senses.” - Friedrich Nietzsche
  • You cannot lie ever, because a lie destroys the credibility of the product, and credibility is more important than anything. Credibility's even more important than clarity.” - Frank Luntz
  • If I were less than honest as a critic, I think people would spot that right away, and it would destroy my credibility.” - Leonard Maltin

Here are some of the many quotations that refer to the media:

  • I do think the standards of the media have dropped to an all-time low in terms of credibility.” -Vince McMahon
  • It's hard to know now who, if anyone, in the media has any credibility.” - Howard Fineman
  • They don't want the public to question their credibility as an investigative news source.” - Joey Skaggs
  • The Times' new credibility committee report that was issued on Monday very specifically said they will be putting in a policy that reporters must get permission from their department heads to appear on television, which I think is a really good thing.” - Daniel Okrent
  • They don't mind being flattered or pandered or coddled or stroked but they can't stand to be duped because it goes directly to their credibility which is most precious to a journalist.” - Roger Mudd

Some with a different twist:

  • In Latin America, when a book is published, publicity plays a minor role. Fighting censorship gives credibility to the writer.” - Manuel Puig
  • Constantly there's a credibility issue; you're judged on how you look. If you look good, people assume you aren't credible. It's a battle you'll always fight if you're on TV and a female.” - Lisa Guerrero
  • When I began my humanitarian work, I understood that in order to gain credibility I needed patience, commitment and unwavering perseverance. I needed to ignore the skeptics.” - Bianca Jagger
  • In America today, if your sensibilities are offended by something that has happened, you get an enormous amount of credibility and are taken very seriously.” - Brit Hume

And, a couple more for consideration this coming week:

You don't want your credibility banana to turn brown, but you do want to speak out about what you believe in.” - Bradley Whitford

I don't care about motivation. I care about credibility.” - Eliot Spitzer

And, do consider how credible you and/or your business are!