It seems that first impressions do count in business according to a recent survey which suggests that how you look and how you talk can determine how quickly you climb up the career ladder.
A firm handshake, a stylish watch and a clean pair of shoes are just three of the things that you can be judged on at a first meeting, according to Brian Beech of Euro RSCG PR which conducted the research.
A PR Perspective
“People are very reassured by a firm handshake as it instils confidence in them that you have confidence in yourself. A limp and weak handshake in these testing times is a real thumbs down as it gives completely the wrong impression.”
Investing in an expensive and stylish watch may also prove beneficial over time as what you wear on your arm says a lot about you as a person and can have a big impact on how seriously people regard you, as Beech explains.
“Just think how horrified you’d be if you’d interviewed someone or closed a deal and as you shook their hand, firmly of course, their watch revealed Mickey chasing Minnie round or was an ostentatious and obviously fake timepiece!”
Clothes, it seems, still maketh the man with clean shoes indicating who might turn out to be a shining star. Wacky ties suggest you are crazy, rather than creative. And smart casual means scruffy to many!
“Lots of people look at people’s nails when they first meet them. If they are bitten to the core it sends out all the wrong signals as it suggests you won’t be able to cope under pressure.
And your accent also says a lot about you, with people immediately casting you in the role of a Northern comic or a Southern softie after only a few exchanges so maybe actions should speak louder than words!”
In this age of 24/7 communication, your answerphone message and what message you put on your ‘Out of Office’ email can also create a good, or bad impression, according to Beech.
“Most people put an Out of Office on that simply says when they are away from and when they will be back but it is a great opportunity to make a good impression by being creative and adding a bit of humour. That way it also deflects anyone from getting annoyed because you’re not available.
“People like doing business with individuals and not anonymous organisations,” continues Beech, “and being a bit different usually prompts a response. That means that if a new business prospect has tried to contact you, they are more likely to reply and wait for your return, rather than simply ignoring you.”
This article was provided by The PR Blog – A Havas PR Website