August 28, 2014 Jez

The “Know, Like & Trust” Factor

Networking and referral expert Bob Burg is famous for his quote (from his excellent book Endless Referrals): “All things being equal, people do business with, and refer business to people they know, like and trust.”

So in order to build relationships it is important to raise your Know, Like and Trust factors with the people from your network.

What does this mean in practice?

  • Know factor: what do people know about you? What is your background? What are your interests on a professional and personal level? Which organizations do you belong to? To raise your Know factor it is important to complete your Profile on LinkedIn as fullyas you can(but achieving a balance before you swamp them in detail!)
  • Like factor: people like people who are helpful, kind, and not pushy. Applying the networking attitude, thinking about what you can share with other people and answering questions in Discussion Groups helps to raise your Like factor.
  • Trust factor: there are two kinds of trust:
    • Trust that you are an expert. This part of the trust factor can be raised when answering questions in Group Discussions in your field of expertise. By giving solid answers you will be perceived as an expert. Also, having recommendations from other people describing your professional expertise will increase your Trust factor.
    • Trust that you will behave in a decent way when you get an introduction or referral. This is a consequence of your behavior described in the Like factor. Receiving recommendations from other people describing your attitude when working with them will also raise this part of the Trust factor.

LinkedIn helps to raise your “Know, Like, and Trust” factor in many ways. As Stephen M.R. Covey wrote in his book, The Speed of Trust: trust can also be transferred via an intermediary. Therefore, it is good to ask for introductions and to pass on messages of trusted connections; this is one of the best and easiest networking actions to take. It works both ways, too: trust (and your reputation) can be damaged very quickly. So be a good advocate as well as a good filter!

To your success,

Bert Verdonck
LinkedIn Expert | Speaker | Trainer | Mentor

PS:Looking for more LinkedIn tips?Learn more about (online) networking principles and how they apply on LinkedIn via the bestselling book “How to REALLY use LinkedIn” (a FREE downloadis available at