The Power Of First Impressions In Business
In business, we all want to make a good first impression as we are pertinently aware of the lasting importance of those first few seconds of meeting someone new.
In many ways, business networking and meeting people for the first time can feel like there are rules of engagement similar to those found in the world of dating. Unfortunately, when it comes to dating we live in such a fast-paced world that few people make the time to truly get to know each other anymore and prefer to “swipe left, swipe right”, rather than get to know each other. In other words, we are now used to judging and being judged primarily on the first impression the visual representation of who we are conveys.
In many ways, the same is true within business. People make fast gut instinct decisions based on how they feel about the person they are meeting, which all comes from their first initial impression of the person.
This gut instinct response, known as a “first impression”, is actually formed by the oldest part of our brain, the reptilian aspect, known as the amygdala. This aspect of our brain is responsible for our fight or flight response to people and situations and is home to our reticular activating system.
The primitive psychological defense mechanism found within the amygdala and reticular activating system assesses and calculates a multitude of tiny elements of detail about a person and the interactions of that person, many of which are so minute that the conscious mind doesn’t even notice them. It computes these data reference points within a split second to calculate your gut instinct of who this person is and assesses them in a way that’s akin to a credit score in terms of their trustworthiness in core areas.
This is the powerful impact first impressions have on all of us – we are all governed by our own first impressions, and we are are all subject to the first impressions other people make about us.
When looking to make a first impression on a personal level in business, one way to convey professionalism is to have an After Hours Medical Answering Service that allows you to serve clients 24/7 without technically having to be there yourself.
Here are three ways you can ensure your first impression serves you, in a business context, rather than works against you:
Inferences are unfortunately made by the car you drive and these status symbols hold a lot of weight in terms of the first impression you make.
Your wardrobe and the clothes you wear are deemed to reflect who you are on the inside, yet it’s not just your clothes, it’s also your physique – so keep in shape, wear appropriate and clothes that compliment your figure.
Shoes have always been a significant symbol of status throughout history; hence the popularity of shoe shining in male culture. Your shoes are often the most overlooked aspect of your fashion ensemble; yet, people often judge a person by the shoes they wear – so ensure you wear shoes that are congruent with the image you are wishing to present.