Follow through on what you say

It’s hands-down the most powerful builder of trust. Opportunities fly towards people who can follow through because it's so rare.

The skill set of "following through" is this:

  1. Just respond.
  2. Do the thing you said you were going to do.
  3. Respond again.

That's literally it. I don't think nearly enough people can do this.

In the business world, this translates to responding to emails within 24 hours of reception. The simplest reason I can come up with to respond to emails as soon as possible is illustrated through this example:

You text your friend at 3:05 pm. You ask what time your friend is picking you up tomorrow for dinner. You go back to doing whatever else you were doing, while checking your phone every 10 minutes to see if they replied. Nothing.

You keep waiting until just before you go to bed -- still no reply. You go to sleep.

Next thing you know, it’s 11 am the next day when you receive a ping on your phone.

The message reads “7 pm”.

Annoying, isn’t it? There’s almost no reason you can comprehend on why it took so long for them just to ping you back within the hour that you sent the text. If anything, this experience makes you feel so much more appreciative of people who can text back within a reasonable time.

It’s literally the same thing for employers and email. 

Young people who are responsive with their email are a breath of fresh air for your co-workers.

In a life full of uncertainty, at least they can count on you to respond quickly. Not only does it make them feel special, it builds trust and your reputation for being dependable.

Trust and dependability are two of the most important qualifications for a new hire that you CANNOT express through your resume.

This is more important than a perfect resume -- if you can show that you’re trustworthy, and reliable to get the job done, even if you don’t know how to do it yet, then you’re instantly more hireable than the guy who just doesn’t give a shit.

This all goes back to following through and being a responsive human being.

Something you don't need a degree to do.