“The more you are willing to accept responsibility for your actions, the more credibility you will have.” – Brian Koslow

Credibility Overview

Credibility is like trust, it takes a long time to build it and it can be lost in a moment. People want to believe in their leaders and have faith that they are the right people to follow. Personal and professional credibility is at the basis of this faith. Personal credibility consists of honcredibility in leadershipesty, integrity, trust, and other personal characteristics that define you as a person. Professional credibility includes your education, experience, performance, and demonstrated professional development.

Why Credibility is Important to a Leader

Without credibility, a leader will have no willing followers. Leaders must focus on building and maintaining both personal and professional credibility. It is almost like credibility is the summation of your character, knowledge, experience, competence, and integrity. It is easy to see that you will have difficulty without professional credibility; but it is just as important to focus on personal credibility.

Benefits for the Leader

Being credible gives the leader earned authority. People will follow those leaders who have strong professional and personal credibility. In addition followers will model your behaviors, and the organization and team as a whole will benefit.

Top 3 Coaches Recommendations for Credibility
  1. Know yourself. What are your strengths and weaknesses? How will you work to enhance your strengths and mitigate your weaknesses? Following through to create a development plan gives you credibility with your team because they observe you seeking to be your best.
  2. Walk the talk! You instantly lose credibility if you say one thing and do another. You can’t expect others to adhere to standards you won’t follow yourself.
  3. Always tell the truth. If others perceive you are not telling the truth, your credibility will suffer substantially. If you cannot disclose information because it is confident, tell anyone inquiring that you must maintain confidentiality.
Measure and Improve Your Credibility

Be determined to improve your credibility. Take the short self-assessment on this page to identify where to improve. Then, get more coaches’ recommendations in Chapter 20 of The Leadership Compass: Mapping Your Leadership Direction to help you renew in this important competency.

Related Competencies:



Measure your credibility skills and behaviors!

Select your level of agreement with each statement in the self-assessment.
When answering the questions, consider how others might evaluate your credibility.


Recommended Credibility Books:

Credibility Code
Personal Credibility Factor
Time to renew

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