I can’t believe I have to write about this, but I run across it more and more in my daily life. Now, I have a full time job at a software company, I work in my spare time with my own clients and am involved in a non-profit organization as well. In all three of these endevours, I come across indivduals who break a fundamental rule of, not only marketing or business, but common sense.
Do not OVERPROMISE AND UNDER DELIVER!!!(sorry, certain writing rules say not to ever write in caps, but oh well)
In the business world, I understand how some people feel they need to do this since they think they will not be awarded the sale, will look foolish in front of their peers or feel like they aren’t as vital to the company as they think. However, they look even more foolish, unreliable and idiotic when they don’t do what they say they are going to do.
Not only is this kind of behavior detremental to your company’s brand, it is detremental to your personal brand. You represent the company you work for and everything you do, affects their brand. This holds true to your personal brand, as well. If you command a reputation for unreliability, this severely limits you and lets people know if they can count on you or not. This is an enormous hurdle to overcome to gain back someone’s trust especially if you never had that trust in the first place.
So, in your personal and professional life, please be transparent with your friends, collegues and clients. This will sometimes be tough in the short term, but in the long run they will know what you tell them is always correct. Example: if you cannot meet a deadline, let them know. If you say you are going to complete a task, do it. (no matter how menial. If you say you are going to call someone on a Friday, call them on Friday. If you say you will email them that artwork in a few minutes, do it!)
It comes down to an easy rule, (which I know is hard in the business world): Tell the truth. Everyone at least will respect you for it.