For those that are in a sales position that look like a movie star and own a superb first impression this article is not for you. For the other 99 percent, well, please read on.
First impressions can be critical but not any more than a second impression. You see I have learned, and practice, the art of second impression. I know that as I meet someone for the first time they have analyzed and summed me up as lacking. It’s just how we’re wired and it starts at birth. According to researchers at the University of Texas, babies like pretty faces better than plain ones. As we grow older this doesn’t change. Advertising has beautiful people peddling wares… on purpose. We all like pretty faces. So… how in the world can the rest of us compete? It’s by achieving a great second impression. Let me share.
Stage One – Interesting and Useful
It started around 5th grade. That’s when I found out I had a debilitating muscle-skin disease. Brain was going to have to win over brawn and I learned my first lesson or first stage of second impression. I would focus on learning. In other words I would develop some depth to my personality. I would become interesting and useful.
Stage Two – A Great Listener and Presenter
As I hit the dating age I decided that to attract a desirable female I needed “skills”. Dale Carnegie came to the rescue with his book – How to Win Friends & Influence People. This was one of the most influential books in developing my life and later sales skills. It was also where I developed the second stage. I learned that people really like to talk about themselves. A very useful tool. You see in listening I could gather intelligent data that I could respond (present) with interesting and useful information. I would go instantly from frumpy guy to “Wow, I like and need this person” and my second impression was achieved!
By obtaining these stages you can achieve creativity, confidence, caring, and purpose among others. Traits that I believe everyone wants in some form or another. Traits that can make you highly successful no matter what your first impression is!
“Don’t be over self-confident with your first impressions of people.” -Chinese Proverb
I continually work on my second impression. For example, now as I get older I realize that I have my work cut out to relate with the younger potential clients. I’m now faced with a first impression of “looks like my dad”. The good news is that by my having a powerful second impression (interesting, useful, and listening) and through a presentation of “doesn’t sound like my dad” I have overcome this impression typically.
While having “pearly whites and perfect hair” does give you a great first impression… I have found that a confident second impression is even more important. Dress sharp, look your best, is always important and I am not belittling that here. Education, self taught or scholastically, is as critical. Listening and understanding are also key elements. Putting these together with a confident presentation and you will be in command and achieve second impression success regardless of what your first impression is.© 2006-2018 SalesBlog! | Photos courtesy of 123RF | Posted on