The big misunderstanding about consistency, and how to get over it

Consistency in a business context usually refers to our desire to be consistent with our words and actions towards clients. The same way that we tend to award our business to those companies that are consistent in their interaction with us. Consistency is a powerful proxy for trustworthiness.

The traditional notion of consistency in corporate sales, marketing and communication often is that one needs to “sing from the same rap sheet”. Mission/vision statements, boilerplate messages, slogans, and elevator pitches are a result of such activities

I label this type of consistency as “simple”. It reminds us more of a totalitarian government’s attempts to quell dissonance. The best way to lose trust is to hear everyone you meet more or less say the same and act the same way, despite different circumstances.

In contrast, “smart consistency” refers to the natural way we take in facts and probe for trustworthiness. We do this across several interactions and expect little repetition and overlap. Often, when we try to reconstruct how a certain provider earned our trust, we notice how several, seemingly unrelated factors simply fell into place. Like pieces of a puzzle.