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From Business Cards to Business Relationships: Personal Branding and Profitable Networking Made Easy, 2nd Edition by Allison Graham

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Chapter 26

Building Your Reputation

Once you're known, you'll be known for something. It's up to you to decide if that's a good or a bad reality. A positive reputation has the potential to open unlimited doors for you, while a negative one can close them quickly.

The first step to consciously building your reputation is to determine if you are, in fact, trustworthy or competent. Convincing others of something that is not true won't last long, if it happens at all. If you determine that you are neither trustworthy nor competent, then you're going to need more than this book to help you. For our purposes, let's assume that you are both a trustworthy businessperson and you are more than capable of delivering a quality product or service.

Every interaction with contacts will add to, subtract from, or reinforce the opinion others have of you. Over time situations will arise where contacts will hear about you and interact with you. Each occurrence contributes to a deeper consideration of your existence, which ultimately reflects on your reputation.

Mastering a positive first impression and being conscious of how you make others feel when they're around you will affect whether or not people like you. Your reputation, developed over time, will determine if people trust you. Your communication of topics related to your profession is how people will learn to believe you are competent.

Have you ever heard someone say, “I wouldn't trust him as far as I could throw him”? That's a perfect example ...

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