A great part of it is your smile, your dress, your handshake, and your vocabulary.
It all contributes to your first impression.
We know we only have one chance to make a first impression. But do we realize we still have the opportunity every day to make countless re-impressions every day, everywhere...with the people we already know. It's great practice for when we need to make those first impressions.
Is it me or does anyone else find they need reminded to smile. It's not that I'm unhappy, but I get involved. I focus way too much sometimes and forget that someone else has to look at my face. I like the way life is when I am smiling more. I like that way others smile back at me...
As much as we like our jeans and casual Friday look, dressing up a bit matters. Sure we throw on some clothes in the morning and we never have to give it another thought, but we aren't the one that will be looking at us all day. Adding a little detail to our dress, a little extra pressing, says, "we've taken a moment to fix up, you are important to me, and I'm excited to be here."
When someone takes the time to shake my hand, it makes me feel like I matter to them. I want to give that same feeling back. Not too firm, but firm enough to show they matter.
Expanding our vocabulary isn't about impressing people with our bigger, longer, and hard to say $20.00 words...as much as it is about explaining exactly what we mean through clearly communication. The person listening, has no doubt or confusion about what they've heard. Using the right words for the right situation. There may be a need to eliminate words from our vocabulary, when they don't seem to work as well as they did before. Or if they take down our level of credibility and confidence. Please, please, please profanity is never appropriate, no matter how big your office is.
By all means first impressions are important, but how can we continue to nurture the re-impressions, long after the first impression has passed? With the people who already know us, our family, colleagues, and friends?
By doing the same things we do at each first impression. Don't be stingy, use this each day with those whom you have already met. It's a sure win to up your relationship factor and increasing their level of trust.
· Smile more and more each day, try it and see if your day doesn't turn out better than you imagined.
· Dress with a little more attention to detail, what are you saving your good clothes for?
· Connect with a healthy handshake, people need 15 healthy touches a day. Don't just reserve a handshake for the first time you meet someone.
· Polish and Expand our Vocabulary
Not an overly taxing list... Does it seem simple enough to nurture your re-impression as a person of influence? If we do all the things we do at a first impression, all the time. We are sure to be prepared.