You make your first impression in under 100 milliseconds. That is not a long time at all! That means everything is riding on how you present yourself during this tiny timeframe. With that in mind, here are a handful of ways to ensure you match an amazing first impression.
Dress In A Way That Makes You Comfortably
You’re not going to be able to focus on others if you’re not feeling yourself. Dress in a way that makes you feel comfortable. If you’re going to a big event, give some thought to what you can wear in advance. This means you can avoid throwing something on last minute. You don’t want to be fiddling with your hemline all night!
A Firm Handshake
A wet and soppy handshake doesn’t give a good first impression. Neither does roughly pumping somebody’s hand up and down. Give a handshake that is firm but gentle. Vary it depending on the hand strength of the person you’re greeting. There is a guide to giving a proper handshake over on Business Insider.
A Genuine Smile
A big, genuine smile goes a very long way in making a fantastic impression. It shows that you are happy to be meeting them and happy to be there. If problems with your teeth or gums are holding you back from giving people your real smile, consider a remedy. This might be veneers, or braces, for instance. Smiling also gives the impression that you are a trustworthy person, which plays a big part in people deciding whether or not they like you.
Slumped over shoulders and a curved back don’t look good to you, and it certainly doesn’t look good to strangers. Straighten your back, pull back your shoulders and lift your chin. Imagine your head is being held up with a piece of string attached to the crown of your head. Good posture gives a strong impression of confidence and self-esteem.
Repeat Their Name Back To Them
Not only does this demonstrate that you have listened to what their name is, it shows that you are actively trying to remember it. Plus, it has been proven that saying a person’s name immediately after learning it helps your memory store and retain it for future use.
Taking Interest In What They Are Saying
Once the very first physical impressions are made, it will be time to open your mouth! However, a good first impression isn’t just about what you say; it’s about how you listen. People love to feel like they are being listened too. It makes them feeling interesting and works to validate the things they are saying. Good listening doesn’t just mean nodding and smiling in all the right places, though. It means actually taking in what they are saying and reacting with genuine interest.
Take Time For Everyone
Even if you want to schmooze with a CEO, it is so important to be nice to everyone there. That goes for the waiters and the cloakroom staff. You never know who will be watching.