Sep 18, 2020
We’ve all heard the saying, “you only get one chance to make a good impression”. The importance of making a good impression can’t be emphasized enough, especially in business. That first impression is the beginning of a relationship, the bond you want to create with colleagues and clients alike. These are the people who could potentially make or break your business or career, so these first encounters are extremely important. If you have a business, that impression doesn’t start when they meet you it starts with the first contact they have with your company - whether that’s a phone call, an email, a networking event, or an encounter with your receptionist when they come to your office for the first time.
Here are 5 ways that you can ensure your first encounter leads to a strong, lasting relationship:
Be Early. Whether it’s an interview or a meeting with a client, we set aside time specifically for those meetings. Being late is a sign of disrespect and disregard for the other person’s time. Make every effort to show up on time – if not early. And if you are going to be late, let them know ahead of time, giving them an option to reschedule if necessary. I always MapQuest my location the night before and plan accordingly.
Listen First, Talk Later. The core of any meeting is to build rapport, and part of that involves listening. Take the time to really listen to what they are saying and look them straight in the eye, ask questions, and interject to show you are truly interested. I know it takes a bit of practice to listen intently but look at the flip side - If you monopolize the conversation, talk about yourself incessantly, or just seem to be waiting for them to stop talking so that you can make your own points, that indicates you really don’t care about the other person.
Give Them Your Undivided Attention. Nothing is more frustrating than trying to have a conversation with someone who is distracted. One of the biggest culprits today is cell phones – and sometimes we aren’t even aware of it. Think about how many times a day you check your phone for emails, send text messages, or answer incoming calls. Constantly looking at your phone when you first meet someone can be damaging: the message received is that you aren’t really interested, or they aren’t that important to you.
Remember Their Name. Everyone loves to hear their name spoken. Forgetting someone’s name or calling them the wrong name will leave the impression that they don’t matter. If you have trouble remembering names, try some simple memory tactics to help you remember – saying their name several times in the first few minutes of your conversation, associating their name with something about their appearance or creating a name rhyme are all good ways to memorize people’s names. You can also think of someone you are close to with the same name, this always works for me.
Be Prepared. Showing up to a meeting unprepared may indicate to the potential client that you may be unreliable. Do your research on the company and/or person you are meeting with to show that you did your due diligence. If you are asked to bring something or to do something before the meeting, make sure you are prepared.
Making a good first impression is extremely important, but there are times when things can and do go wrong. While a lapse in judgment may cause you to leave a bad first impression, it may take a while, but you can recover. Finally, if you do feel that your relationship with a colleague or client got off on the wrong foot, don’t pretend it didn’t happen. It’s best to take responsibility, apologize and ask for a second chance. This shows them you care and want to work at building a strong, trusting relationship.
Wearable Imaging is all about making great first impressions. Give us a call at 949.888.7837 or email us at email@example.com to set up your complimentary strategy session with our President Robin Richter.
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