September 1, 2016
No matter the industry you work in first impressions are important. In those first moments of meeting someone new you are judging can I trust this person, are they competent, will we get along, etc. It is so important to understand and master the art of first impressions. Here are six tips on how to get started:
- Be on time. This can’t be stressed enough. The person you are meeting does not care about why you are late or what excuse you have, no matter how valid it may be. Being on time is the first vital step in making a good first impression.
- Put your phone down. No matter who you are talking to it’s a good idea to give them your undivided attention, but if it is someone new it is even more important. Showing them that you are interested and engaged will make them want to talk to you and continue conversation with you.
- Use active listening. This means you should nod or make small comments of acknowledgement. Ask questions. Write notes if it’s appropriate. Summarize and repeat back what is being said to you to show that you are paying attention.
- Positive body language. Make sure that your facial expression and gestures reflect the point you are trying to make. Be active in your movements, but not aggressive.
- Talk second. Let the other person take the lead in the conversation. This opens up room for you to ask more questions and it builds their trust in you.
- Do your homework. Come in prepared with a good knowledge base on the other person and/or the company. Have questions prepared and ways to link your background back to their profession or company.
December 11, 2014
You’ve heard the saying “there’s no second chance to make a first impression”, and they’re right. A client’s first impression of you and your business is extremely important. But how do you make a good first impression? Here are 5 ways to avoid making your first impression your worst impression:
- Your real first impression isn’t in person. If you’re meeting a client face-to-face, there’s a good chance they did some research. Their first impression of you came from your website or social media sites. It’s critical that you keep your online presence updated and accurate so clients feel confident about you before you even get a chance to say hello.
- Do your homework. Before you meet face-to-face with a client, make sure to look at their company website and personal social media. You can be sure your client looked you up, and you want to do the same. Having some basic information about the company and personal interests shows that you know your stuff.
- Look the part. Appearance is everything. Well not everything, but it’s definitely important. Looking put together leaves a better first impression. Not only will the client take you more seriously, you’ll feel more confident about yourself.
- Have a plan. Before your meeting, set some goals for yourself. Not just business goals, but social goals as well. Make an agenda for the meeting so you know where to focus your time. You’ll feel more prepared and less nervous if you know what you’re going to say.
- Be yourself. No one wants to have a meeting with a robot (unless it was an actual robot, that would be pretty cool.) Don’t get strait to business, make a connection. Don’t wait too long to start the meeting, but take the first 30 seconds to a minute to say hello, shake hands, and small talk before getting into it. This establishes trust, which is definitely a plus in a business relationship.
Follow these steps, and you’ll be sure to make your first impression a great one.
How do you make a good first impression?