The first impression is what the people think you are, and they will build their opinion about it around that impression. In many cases, it’s not enough just to be appealing and polite. You need to be careful what are you wearing, how do you greet others, the way you talk and have control over your voice, body language, confidence, and does it all comes naturally, or you fake it. Trust us, the people can detect if you are faking the impression.
So, it’s better to practice in advance, so you can be what you are, but in your shiniest version. Keep in mind that the people need about a few minutes to get that impression, so be ready from the first minute you get out from your home, until the end of the meeting. Sometimes, some impressions can’t be reversed, so you have to be really careful with this one, especially if the meeting is crucial for you, your business, or professional development.
Some people have great ideas on how to enhance that first impression, and show off their status. They choose nice clothes, always wear office-friendly perfume, and even rent luxurious vehicles so they can impress others. If you are interested in some of these ideas, you can visit this site to see how it’s done.
Also, there are those with natural charisma, and they leave a good impression no matter where they are. You can learn a lot from them, but also, you can use some of these tricks and tips:
1. Arrive on time
If the meeting is at 9 am, you need to be there at least five minutes before. Don’t go earlier, because you will wait a lot of time, and maybe you will feel uncomfortable when the meeting begins. Also, don’t get late, because there is no excuse good enough for that. You need to plan things differently, because all the other conditions may be against you, like traffic or the rain outside. If there is a chance to get late, just schedule the meeting 15 minutes later than you supposed initially. But in general, arriving on time will be a good start of creating that good first impression, they will appreciate it a lot.
2. Introduce yourself politely
When the time comes, you need to tell everything that is relevant about you but doesn’t make it longer than 90 seconds. Tell your name, a brief explanation of who you are and why are you there, and then let the others introduce themselves. Don’t go into details, and leave them for the end of the meeting.
3. Be respectful of the dress code
Many companies won’t require the business style or business casual style, because we all know that clothes are nothing compared to someone’s personality and skills. But if some specific dress code is required, you have to be respectful of that. If it’s not, then wear comfortable clothes, that are still clean and tidy. You don’t have to look like a model to leave a good impression, but also if the business style is not comfortable to you, you can always adjust it as you want.
4. Be nice and polite
Try to avoid robotic behavior, because people won’t feel comfortable around you. Small talks before the official part starts are a good way for everyone to relax, and make the meeting more comfortable, even when sensitive topics are on the table.
5. Don’t interrupt the conversation
We are sure you know this one, but let’s make it clear. It’s not polite to interrupt the conversation, to chew gum loudly, to check your emails and social media during the meeting, and to ignore the important points of it. Try to pay as much attention as you can. We know that meetings are usually boring, but you can easily overcome that if you put the distraction away from you. That will help you build a relationship with your coworkers or the potential employer, without putting a lot of effort into it.
6. Research the company in advance
Visit their website or Wikipedia page, check on their social media profiles, visit their store, or pass by the headquarters, so you can give an impression that you are interested in what they do, and you appreciate that. If you can find some interesting projects they worked on, you can acknowledge them. That will give you additional points in their eyes, and increase your chances for long-term collaboration.
7. Prepare some questions to ask, but don’t ask a lot
At the end of the meeting, they will encourage the people to ask questions, and you can ask anything related to their work. But, stick to one or two questions, and try to be concise and clear. Once you get the answers, you can repeat some key points, just to make sure you understand. And it’s also good to mention that even if you know the answers, asking some brief questions will give an impression that you are really interested in the topic, and they will surely appreciate that.
8. Stick to the topic
The key to a successful business meeting is sticking to the topic and not letting the conversation go in the wrong direction. You all know the purpose of that meeting, and it’s always better to stay there, instead of going away from the topic and discussing everything than the important things for you and the company.
The first impression is a combination of appearance, clothes, voice, intonation, behavior, and skills, and interests. It’s on you how you will represent yourself in front of your clients, collaborators, or potential employees. If you are experienced in this, you surely have some tricks you always use, to give yourself the courage to present what you can do (and share some of them with us).
And if you are here because you are experiencing something new, just follow these tips carefully. We are sure you will get the most of this meeting, and reach the goals you set previously.