4 Ways to Make a Good First Impression
Did you know that the people you meet size you up in just 3 seconds, determining your level of professionalism and whether or not they would like to pursue a business relationship with you? In 3 seconds no one can determine your personal values or level of integrity; it’s obviously a superficial assessment. And while you may be morally opposed to such things, the truth is that your business depends, to a certain extent, on your ability to project a positive first impression. Here are four things to consider when meeting people for the first time:
1. Dress and GroomingObviously, the way you dress says something about you and even the way you conduct business. If you’re a sloppy dresser some might assume you’re also a sloppy accountant. If you’re well groomed, many will assume you’re a trusted professional and will remember that impression the next time they look for someone to manage their finances. So consider your wardrobe and if necessary, invest in some power outfits. They don’t have to be expensive, but they should fit well and help you present a refined image. You may be surprised at how this modest investment is returned to you through a larger clientele.2. Speaking and MannerismsThe way you carry yourself and speak to others leaves a powerful impression. If you’re articulate, confident and well spoken, they’ll think highly of you, and as a result, they’ll think highly of your business. Also watch those mannerisms that are uniquely you. The way you pick at your teeth may be enduring to your husband, but a potential client may not think so. Carry yourself with confidence and ease and you’ll find that people are drawn to you and feel comfortable in your presence, thus securing that dazzling first impression.3. MarketingThe materials you distribute to promote your business also provide potential clients with an impression of you and your services. Poorly written and designed materials, even on a website, may cause people to assume that your work would be equally unimpressive. You should ensure that everything that leaves your office has been reviewed and proofread by a third party. It’s important that your marketing materials have a professional look and feel so that your target audience will appreciate the polished image you’re trying to convey.4. Professional CorrespondenceThe way you interact with people also leaves an impression. Something as simple as the way you answer the phone, the timeliness in which you respond to an email, or the manner you use to greet those who come to your office, all demonstrate your professionalism. When you treat people with respect in all those interactions, they’ll come to respect you and your business.
Don’t disregard the significance of a powerful first impression. When those you first meet are struck by your appearance, professionalism, and confidence, they will remember your business and come to you for their financial needs. So while 3 seconds isn’t very long, it’s long enough to increase your client roster and your bottom line.