First impressions last

First impressions last
Firstimpressions

There are many things in life that you can do multiple times.  Making a first impression isn’t one of them.

First impressions are lasting.  Once a first impression is made, if it’s less than great, unfortunately it takes a long time to change it. 

Experts say it takes between five and 15 seconds for someone to form a first impression about a person.  According to William Thourlby in his book “You Are What You Wear:  The Key to Business Success,” the first time we meet someone, we’re trying to size them up.  People look at socio-economic status, level of education, social position, level of sophistication, economic background, social background, moral character and level of success.

First impressions are influenced by our backgrounds, including our families, friends, education, religion, jobs and other factors.  These include body language, dress and appearance, and voice.  Your body language and appearance speak much louder than words.  Use your body language to project appropriate confidence and self-assurance.  Stand tall, make eye contact, greet with a firm handshake.

Quite possibly, one of the most important and terrifying times to make a spectacular first impression is when you are interviewing for or starting a new job. 

The first day of a new job can be exciting and nerve-racking at the same time.  Even if you never plan to leave your current job, you’ll probably be promoted or switch to a new position at some point, and the experience will be much the same.  There are some guidelines for relieving some of that stress on day one that you should keep in mind.

  • Don’t be late.  In fact, it’s best to be a little early.  Double-check where you’re supposed to be and what time you’re expected to start.  If it’s a new workplace, test your route and give yourself extra time for a prompt arrival.
  • Learn the lay of the land.  Your manager will probably show you around, but make an extra effort to remember what you see so you don’t have to repeat the same questions.  Yes, you can always ask for directions later, but you’ll impress people more by being a quick study.
  • Master people’s names.  Again, you’ll gain a reputation for attention and thoughtfulness by memorizing the names of everyone you meet.  There are a variety of memory strategies that will help you match names and faces.  There is no bigger compliment than using someone’s name when you speak to them.
  • Bring your lunch.  Maybe the boss or co-workers will take you out to lunch on your first day, but don’t count on it.  Stay in the workplace and eat in the lunchroom so you get a chance to meet more people.  Just don’t waste too much time chowing down on your first day – demonstrate your eagerness to get back …read more
    Source: Harvey Mackay