The short answer to that question is, ‘no’ – it is what it is. A first impression is what you project to someone whenever they are first connected to you.
Especially if you’re in a B2B-type business, it’s important to remember that your body language, the words you speak, and the way you present yourself (hair, clothing, if online, through your copy), etc., are what people will immediately judge.
Yes, as humans, no matter what, we do judge. Some more than others, but we all do it! I was raised with all those basic ‘golden’ rules, and abide by them faithfully. In this situation, it’s the ‘do unto others’ rule that helps me stay focused on how I present myself.
Beyond that, and equally as important, my first impression, and those that follow, are a huge part of my personal brand. Branding within your business is not only the look and feel of your website, or your logo, letterhead and business cards, but in many ways, about how you do business, and your business style and acumen.
Even when I was in phone sales, the tone of my voice, the way I managed and cared for my clients, and even the level of knowledge I shared, were all a part of that first and on-going impression. When I started my own business, having had so many years in phone sales really allowed me some distinct advantages over my competitors, because I understood this brand and the promise I made when serving them, as well as a real secret that many didn’t even think of in the same situation.
Even though I could have been sitting at my desk working in pajamas, I made myself shower and dress each morning as if I were going to a corporate office. I remembered to ‘smile’ when I picked up the phone and addressed a caller, and I was continually complimented because people noticed.
But I do believe that we can get a second chance at that first impression, if we handle it properly, and try to be more of a listener when in someone’s company on that second effort.
I know there have been times when someone has not made a good first impression on me, but later, and sometimes it takes multiple ‘later’ connections to happen, I will find that the person is not who I initially thought they were, and have gone on to have a mutually beneficial relationship, whether on a personal or professional level.
I’d be the first to say that there have been times when I was not at the top of my game, or perhaps was having a bad day, but if the relationship is worth developing, the laws of attraction will find a way to bring you back together, to consider a more positive connection.
To make a great first impression, you need to develop your personal brand and make sure you project it each and every time you’re meeting people for the first time. Even if you never end up seeing that person again, leaving a good impression is sure to help you grow as a person and a professional.
Jeannine Grich, CVA, MVA, EthicsChecked™, provides marketing and social media support, training and consulting to busy entrepreneurs. For information about finding a VA, download her FREE 10-Step Guide to Finding the Right VA, or to learn why Social Media should be an important part of your marketing plan with her FREE Report, Social Media Marketing Benefits, visit: https://accbizsvc.com, or contact her at Jeannine@accbizsvc.com