Degree of reliability

To be or not to be… that’s the question.” Well, no longer is that the question when it comes to trust. One of the most common things we all do is meet new people at different points in life. If things turn favourable, they may turn into friends, partners and spouses. They turn into people who we would trust with our lives blindly. But not all people are worthy of that much trust. We often run across people who aren’t really worth that much faith. But this must not be mistaken with taking them absolutely unreliable, for they aren’t that as well. (Well, some may be but I’m trying for a more general case here.) And so the question changes to, “How much to trust exactly?”

Welcome to the newest post of Narrating The Dream that has taken quite a lot of effort to be penned down, and even now, I know it isn’t good enough.

Whether it be a friend, a relative, a spouse or a parent, there is always a possibility for the person to be mentally labelled as unreliable. It may have been the smallest of things that we did wrong but what we don’t realize is that people are often observing us and our actions and behavior for these little things. And when we show that we are not as responsible as they would like us to be, like arriving to a meeting late or not completing the projects before the time of submission. To us, they may seem like little things but to other people, these incidents act as fodder for pushing you out on major jobs/projects. Now, most of us would whine at such incidents that they are being unfair to us. But are they really the only ones who’s being unfair here?

Even when we request aids or approach others for help, we too watch carefully how the other person responds. None of us would ever go for typing some stuff to a person who would rather just do something else, even if the person volunteers, because we know that the person would ultimately let us down. But does this make the person unreliable? Not really, for consider the situation that if the same person loves to research facts and data for you, then he/she will be your ‘go-to’ guy/girl for that type of work. We would be confident in approaching him/her and be relaxed that the job tasked would be completed effectively.

So now, the question remains on how do you know if a person’s reliable for a job or is completely reliable or absolutely unreliable. Sadly, this cannot be answered without testing out the person. The only reliable solution I can think of is to give the person a smaller-scale version of the job along with a deadline and keep checking progress periodically. To be on the safe side, you can also hand over the same job to a reliable person as well. (Just don’t let them talk about it or they’ll know!) If the person under observation shows true dedication, then you know he’s/she’s a reliable one. But if he/she doesn’t, then you will have to start a test for a different kind of job. And if he/she is absolutely unreliable, it is better to get rid of the person now rather than risk everyone who depends on you. (And with all those screw-ups, you should be armed with plenty of ammunition.) This, however, doesn’t mean that you need to destroy the relationships and friendships built with each other. (And managing this is a tough feat.) There would be times when people change and might deserve a second chance. So I would suggest re-evaluating them if you notice any changes. Because any type of increase in options (or decrease in them as well) will be useful in life.

Also, note that though I have used a situation of a workplace, this also works for people in a community or an organization or even within families.

So, what do you think? Have you felt a need like this to separate the reliable folks from the unreliable ones for a particular job? Do you have any note-worthy incidents to share? Please do tell in the comments below.

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