Why Business Benefits from Telling It Like It Is

Posted in:

Why you should always tell it like it is

Here at Platinum “Tell it like it is” is a common phrase you’ll hear from our CEO & Founder Joshua Nicholls. He believes a lot of Platinum’s early success was simply because he would communicate honestly and tell it like it was. When asked about this very topic Josh says “Customers can easily get the vibe of if you’re a good bloke or not. They’re not silly. There’s no point in not being honest or integral, it always comes back to bite you if you’ve been dodgy in business or your personal life.”

The idea of honesty isn’t always the first thing people think of when they hear ‘business’, but with today’s consumers more and more vocal in their demand for honest communication, speaking the truth in business has never been more important.

According to global communications and public relations firm Cohn & Wolfe, the number one quality or behaviour that people demand of big brands is communicating honestly about products and services. This is closely followed by not letting customers down and acting with integrity at all times. Surprisingly, innovation, great products and popularity all sat near the bottom of the list.

Cohn & Wolfe’s research tells us that following the recent years of economic turmoil, consumers are demanding a more open and honest relationship with brands – one that is mutually respectful and based, above all, on truthfulness and integrity. The world’s big brands should take note. Authenticity must be taken seriously.

Away from the research, honest communication simply makes sense when you consider the world we are living in today. When everything is digital, brands have nowhere to hide. In this sense, authenticity no longer becomes an option. Either you embrace it, or it will be forced upon you.

Here are a few more reasons to be honest in your business.

1. Honesty creates trust

When you are honest with your customers, you immediately build a relationship that’s based on trust and mutual respect. People appreciate businesses that tell it like it is – even when it’s not exactly what they may want to hear. And with trust comes loyalty, the most valuable asset a business can ask for.

2. Your honesty helps spread the word

When people offer up recommendations, they want to know that it won’t come back to bite them in the butt. By building trust with your customers, you help them feel confident in sharing your information with friends, family and colleagues. When you share an honest experience, it becomes meaningful, and naturally people talk about the moments that mean something to them.

3. A lack of understanding breeds speculation

Let’s say you own a cafe. You’re in the middle of a busy service when the chef knocks over the batter for the corn fritters. This is turn creates a long wait. The customer gets restless while you pretend nothing is wrong. The customer speculates that the kitchen has poor time management and that you don’t care. They go on to tell others about their negative experience.

Now let’s say you are honest with the customer. You inform them of the chef’s mistake and offer two solutions – they can wait for the chef to make a fresh batter or they can choose another breakfast option. The customer is happy that you have kept them informed and appreciates your honesty. Their overall experience is positive, regardless of the wait.

4. Honesty creates a positive working environment

When your employees see the effort you go to to be honest with your customers, they learn to trust that you’ll be honest with them too. By being honest in your actions, you breed an environment of honesty from the big boss down to the temporary office clerk.

An employee that finds they are left in the dark regarding certain business elements is unlikely to become invested in your company. Nothing breaks down relationships faster than knowing something is going on but not being able to ask what it is. While this doesn’t mean disclosing your account details, it does mean speaking honestly about your goals and any major changes that may be occurring.

5. Upfront confessions are easier to handle than aggravated customers

If you think a job might take longer or end up costing more than a potential customer might have anticipated, be honest with them. There’s little chance it will be a deal breaker if they feel you are speaking with integrity, and by being upfront, there’s less chance of upsetting them later on. If they feel you have dropped the ball and given them false information, they likely won’t be recommending you or using your services again.

6. It’s the right thing to do

Let’s face it, being honest helps you sleep better at night. Keeping employees in the dark, giving false information to clients or lying to yourself about what’s going on in your business is a disaster waiting to happen.

7. More minds make challenges easier

A brain, no matter how big it is, can’t solve a problem if it’s not aware of it. When you are honest about the challenges you are facing with those around you, they can help you find a solution. Many hands make light work, right?

8. Honesty encourages more honesty

Let’s say you’re about to invest heavily in a new product you believe will be a game-changer in your company. Your employees disagree, fearing it could be a total waste of both time and money. If you have created an environment fuelled by trust, they will advise you of their concerns. You can then address these concerns in a bid to get them more enthusiastic, or come up with a better solution together.

Tell it like it is

Lying, or merely shading the truth, to get ahead in business may be a tempting shortcut, but lies have a habit of unravelling somewhere. A person at the top of a business should always aim to set a good example, but it’s also crucial to ensure staff are comfortable telling the truth too. Practice empathy and apologies, role play difficult scenarios and talk openly about the consequences of lying and the positives of truth telling. Both your employees and your customers will thank you for it.

Here at Platinum Electricians we believe our approach to being an open book and telling it like it is, is what has attracted so many electricians Australia wide to join us as a franchisee. If you, or someone you know may be interested in building a successful electrical business, click here to find out more.