How to make a good first impression

21 October 2010
How to make a good first impression

Whether it's a potential employer or a client, a little thought about how you present yourself in your first meeting can go a long way.

Although sometimes it just can't be avoided, being late can betray a lack of organisation, or even worse, a lack of respect. Plan to arrive a few minutes early and make allowances for problems like heavy traffic.

Make sure you are wearing smart, clean clothes, have brushed your teeth and have mints handy.

3. BE YOURSELF Try to relax so that you feel at ease, calm and confident. If you feel tense and uncomfortable, this can have the unfortunate effect of making the person you are meeting feel the same way.

4. SMILE Try and wear a warm and confident smile to help the person you are meeting feel comfortable with you. But don't overdo it or you may come across as insincere or smarmy.

A firm handshake is good but don't make it too tight.

6. MIRRORING Try to mirror the stance or posture of the person you are meeting - if they stand, stand. If they sit, sit. It may also help to adjust your tone of voice so that it matches theirs.

Make sure you pay attention to what they other person is talking about and try to be able to summarise whatever it is that they have said if you have to.

8. PREPARE Take a few minutes to learn something about the person you are meeting beforehand - their interests and activies - so that you have something to talk about.

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