Are you wondering what the big fuss about first impressions is? This blog looks at how first impressions are formed, why they are so important and what we can do to create them.
Whether you like it or not, when we meet others for the first time, a judgement is made. Humans do this first and foremost in order to survive. Evaluating situations and making judgements is crucial to our survival. It is human nature to evaluate and judge others.
The judgements we make are based off our prior knowledge and understandings. They can change over time as we learn more about the world and have more experiences. Our judgements are not always accurate! However, they still have meaning for us. Over time, we have learnt to associate certain traits and demeanours with different outcomes. We look at people’s body language, appearance and how they sound to form our opinions.
Let’s look at the example of someone turning up to a job interview looking scruffy and untidy. There may be many reasons as to why the person presented this way. However, it is very likely that the interviewer will form the opinion that the person is lazy, may not be competent and/or doesn’t really care much about the interview or the job. That’s the impression that their approach to grooming has given.
It takes just a quick glance or a mere 7 seconds for someone to evaluate and form an impression when meeting you for the first time.
Impressions are formed by how we feel when we meet a new person. Did they make us feel comfortable or uncomfortable? Did they instil a sense of confidence in their ability, or did we doubt their competence? Did they come across as trustworthy, intelligent and friendly, or the opposite?
First impressions are important for many reasons. They can set the tone for the relationship that follows on and help to build rapport, respect and trust so the relationship flows along comfortably.
This can be vital in certain circumstances such as job interviews, business meetings, auditions or castings, and when meeting new people socially. Creating a positive first impression can help you land a new job, gain a new client, enhance your reputation, gain new friends and open up many opportunities.
Creating a positive first impression is the goal. It’s definitely worth trying to get it right the first time, as studies have shown that it is nearly impossible to reverse or undo a first impression. However, don’t put unrealistic pressure on yourself – just a healthy amount of care and consideration will work well. Keep in mind that having good intentions and a great attitude will shine through if something else beyond your control goes amiss.
At Suzan Johnston Australia, we’ve been teaching the art of creating a positive first impression for over 62 years.
In order to present the best version of ourselves and leave a positive first impression on others, there a number of things we can consider. For instance:
For more on this, check out our blog on the Top 10 Ways to Leave a Lasting First Impression.
At Suzan Johnston Australia, we are passionate about helping people realise their ‘full self’ and therefore empowering them to move through life with confidence and grace.
All of our Nationally Recognised Courses and Short Courses offer practical guidance and feedback on how to create positive first impressions. This training is included in all of our vocational and accredited courses, such as:
First impressions and confidence training are also a large part of our personal development courses and modelling courses. We also offer private personal development training for adults.
For more information, please contact us to discuss how we can help you.