Have you ever heard the saying that you don’t get a second chance to make a first impression? People judge you when they meet you, and what folks think of you can impact the course of your life.
You should always strive to make a good impression as it might be the difference in landing the job of your dreams or remaining on the unemployment line.
Did you know that you only have a few seconds to make a good impression? You were always told that you should never judge a book by its cover, but sadly, people tend to be overly critical of others. They notice your manners and your appearance is important too.
15 Traits of an Individual Who Makes a Good Impression
Making a good impression is vital, and you have little time to do it. Here are 15 tips that can help you ensure that you create an excellent first impression, especially when the encounter is essential.
1. Watch Your Body Language
It doesn’t matter what you say if your body language shows something different. Your physique will naturally react when you are nervous or feeling overconfident.
If you find yourself rolling your eyes, giving smirks after comments are made, and having other nervous ticks, the other person may see you uninterested or inpatient with them.
Your body has a way of doing things out of your control. Have you ever had a nervous tic in your mouth or eye? Nerves cause most of these nuisances. Thankfully, you can control rolling your eyes and smirking.
Never underestimate the power of your body language and how it can impact someone’s impression of you.
2. Use an Appropriate Tone of Voice
Have you ever noticed how your tone can change the meaning of your sentence? If you use a monotone voice, then the other party may feel that you are unenthused by them or their conversation.
You want to make sure your voice is the right pitch, and whatever you do, control your tone. You can say the sweetest words possible, but if your tone is off, then it doesn’t matter what comes out of your mouth.
3. Smile (essential for a welcoming first impression)
When you meet people for the first time, you want them to feel that you are friendly and approachable. Having a smile on your face is like displaying a welcome sign.
People who walk around frowning and look like they’ve lost their best friend are using their body language to tell people to stay away. What does your body language say about you?
4. Listen More Than You Speak
Talking about yourself is effortless, but you should listen more than you speak. While it’s okay to tell a little about your life, you don’t want to yap incessantly. Rather, become an avid listener who only points out the highlights of your finest moments.
Speak only enough to keep the conversation going, and let the other person have the floor.
5. Be on Time
There’s nothing worse than a person who is chronically late. If you are going for a job interview or a first date, they will judge you by every little detail. It’s customary to arrive about five to ten minutes early. Make a good impression by showing your punctuality.
6. Wear Proper Attire
Have you ever heard that you should dress for success? Your clothes will give an instant impression of you before you ever open your mouth. If you’re going to an interview, then you need to be dressed professionally.
No matter where you go in life, you should always arrive well-dressed, clean, and have appropriate clothes. If you show up with a floral Hawaiian shirt to go to a formal gathering, then you may stand out like a sore thumb. Choose your clothes wisely.
7. Be Positive
Nobody likes a negative Nellie. You should be positive and speak only about upbeat subjects. Stay away from politics, the state of the world, and things that can rile some individuals.
Rather, talk about neutral topics like the weather, your family, and other generalities. Don’t be a pessimist, especially at a job interview or on a first date. You want to appear cheerful, so there is a second date or interview.
8. Never Badmouth or Gossip about Others
If you’re in a job interview, the worst thing you can do is to badmouth another company or its employees. The prospective employer may think that you were part of the problem and not them. Watch what you say and who you talk about on first encounters as it can show your character. No one likes a gossip.
9. Be Open-Minded
Everyone you meet isn’t going to have the same opinions as you. You must remain open-minded even if someone’s philosophy doesn’t align with yours. Always be willing to accept the differences and not be quick to judge others. If you close your mind, then your body language can show your dislike for the topic or situation.
10. Be Prepared
You must be prepared for any first meetings, especially if you have an interview. Try to find out as much as you can about the company and focus on crucial details. If you are meeting new friends, remember that these people can be potentially helpful to network in your career. Your first impression is vital for so many areas of life.
11. Don’t Put on a Show (it makes a poor first impression)
Some people put on a real show when they have first encounters. Be true to yourself. If these people are your friends, then they will like you for who you are.
If it’s a job prospect, then they should see the real you because that’s the person who would come to work every day. Your first impression should be a good one, but it should be truthful.
12. Use Manners
A few manners can go a long way. Saying “please,” and “thank you” as well as opening the door for others shows signs of good breeding. If you want people to like you, then use good manners from the start.
13. Always be Honest
You don’t ever have to embellish on your life or your accomplishments to make people like you. Telling false stories to get a job or a date can backfire. Tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, and you will have a better chance of making an excellent first impression.
14. Make Eye Contact
Eye contact is especially important, and some folks see it as respectful. Have you ever seen someone talk to you and look to the corner or down at the floor? Nerves can make your eyes wander all over the place, and some people see wondering eyes as rude.
When someone is speaking to you, be sure you look them directly in the eye. Even if you feel your eyes start to wonder, blink, and refocus your attention on the person talking.
15. Be Memorable
Part of making the first impression is that you need to be memorable. What makes a person unforgettable to you? You don’t need to be obnoxious, lie, or continuously talk to be memorable to someone.
However, you must find some way to make your mark, especially if you’re going for a job interview. You can wow people with manners and eloquent conversation, but your smile and nice clothes will help win them.
It would help if you found some ways to connect and make them remember you long after you’re gone.
Final Thoughts on How to Put Your Best Foot Forward and Make a Great First Impression
Did you know that that average job posting gets over 250 resumes in response? The job market is fierce, and employers are looking for someone that stands out from the rest. How do you stand out among so many people?
It’s a daunting task, but your skills and resume get your foot in the door, and your first impression will get you a chance to come back. There is more to life than your career, as you will also have many other occasions when you are relying on a first impression.
What if you want a date with that special someone? You want them to feel the chemistry and see something in you that piques their interest. You want to be memorable but not in a bad way.
Here are a few additional things to consider:
•Don’t wear an overpowering cologne or perfume
•Wear clothes that fit well and are appropriate for the occasion
•Shake hands firmly and look them in the eye
•Smile and laugh when suitable
•Don’t check or play with your phone on an interview or first date
•Don’t be overzealous and ask inappropriate questions
•Make your wishes known – tell them if you want a second date or interview
•Try not to fidget or mess with keys or change in your pockets
Since you only get one chance to make that impression, you should choose your words, clothes, and actions wisely. Who knows, it may help you to land a dream job or the partner you’ve always wanted.