Advantages of Being Reliable
by Ron Kurtus (revised 16 April 2001)
A person who does as promised can be considered as reliable. Reliability is an admirable characteristic. People don't like to deal with those who are unreliable. They'd rather give
their business & rewards to the person they can count on. Also, the reliable person feels good
knowing that he or she is trusted.
Questions you may have are:
- What does it mean to be reliable?
- What is being unreliable?
- How does reliability pay?
This lesson will try to answer those questions. There is a mini-quiz near the end of this lesson.
Reasons people are unreliable
If you promise to do something, the other person assumes you're good for your word. Sometimes that promise is implied
or assumed. Some people will renege on their word or responsibility for a number of possible reasons.
The person may have lied to get out of an uncomfortable or awkward situation & never intended to do what he said. Suppose someone asked you to come over to help with some task, which you didn't really care to do. It may be easier to say you will but then never show up. The other person would think you were unreliable, if this happened more than once.
Something more important may have come up. Suppose you were supposed to meet someone, but then some friends came over & wanted to
go out. So you never show up, because the other activity was more important to you. Being considerate & calling the other person would be awkward, so you don't bother.
Business or work
A person at work is often late on completing assignments, either because they're too difficult or he gets sidetracked
with more interesting activities. His boss & fellow workers consider him unreliable.
You can't count on a person who is known to be unreliable to follow thru on what he or she has
promised to do. A person may promise to pick you up at the airport but then not show up, because "he forgot." Or a person
may come to a meeting late, because she got involved in some other activity & lost track of time.
Renege on promises
What happens with unreliable people is that they renege on their promises. They're unreliable because the way the set their priorities. Their promise to you isn't as important to them as something else.
Caught up in own interests
Some people lack the skills to complete jobs. Some lie & have no intention of doing the job. Some have good intentions but are so forgetful or caught up in their own interests that they forget or don't bother to do what they promised.
You aren't important
Often, what they're saying is that you aren't as important. A person who is unreliable at work us saying that the job isn't as important to them as some other activity.
A reliable person is one who has a track record of doing what he or she promised to do. If a
person continually completes tasks she promised to do, she's then considered reliable. If a person
has says he'll show up at 10:30 & he's known to be reliable, you can count on him to be on time.
Being considered reliable means that you're conscientious & keep your promises. A reliable person doesn't make excuses.
Benefits of being reliable
Certainly, you would want to associate with a person you can count on. Supervisors want to keep employees that
are reliable & who that can count on to come to work on time & to complete assigned tasks. Such a person
is trusted to do as promised.
Trust leads to
The benefits of being reliable are that people trust you & feel they can count on you. A reliable person will get & keep friends much
easier than someone who is careless in personal relationships & can't be counted on to keep his or her word. A reliable worker
will be trusted to do the job as promised &
can reap the rewards of raises & promotions.
A business that has a reputation of being reliable or making reliable products
will get repeat & new business, as well as reducing costs of rework or repair.
Negative side to being reliable
On the negative side of being considered reliable, there are situations where others can soon
take you for granted & not appreciate your reliability. It's a trait of human nature that if something or someone is very predictable,
then those actions aren't appreciated.
Although it's possible to be taken advantage of by being reliable & predictable, in the long
run reliability is the best way to be.
Being reliable is an admirable trait. We all dislike dealing with people who are unreliable, so being reliable is a character trait for which we should strive. People thank you for it. You get a good reputation. You also feel good about yourself when you do as promised.
It's a good feeling to be "a man of his word" or a "woman of her word."
A reliable person has a track record of keeping promises. An unreliable person shows he or she
doesn't really care about others. You can't count on such a person. The benefits of being reliable include promotions at
work, better personal relationships & increased self-esteem.