Presentation Skills

First impressions are valuable

‘He looks like he sleeps on the streets and smells like a garbage truck but he’s great at what he does’.
Seriously, would you like that introduction?

When did you lose the sale?
So many times an opportunity will be lost during the creation of that vital first impression. We make up our minds about people in less than seven seconds and once a bad impression is created you rarely get a second chance to put it right. If that bad impression can be fixed with a little thought about grooming, you’d be mad not to take action today to fix it.

How many appointments do you have with your shower each week?
At the very heart of creating the right impression is personal hygiene. Those who are fresh, use deodorant and project a healthy, well-groomed image are obviously going to be more appealing than those who look and smell like they just woke up after a heavy night. And while you shower give those finger nails a scrub – ever been form filling with someone else where you are pointing things out?

Are you dressing for the business you want?
Once you have showered there is little point in then putting on clothes that are not freshly laundered and pressed. You have to smell great and look great. Invest in clothes that will help you project the personal branding that will get you the business you want. And, ‘they should accept me as I am’, means you are making a lifestyle choice not a business choice. Get over it, your mum might have accepted you the way you are the rest of us need you to wake up and help us to help you.

Do you have a toothbrush?
What did you eat last night and did you use your toothbrush before you left home this morning? You may look great but your breath lets you down because you were eating garlic for dinner; first impression – blown. Just as you should visit your dental hygienist on a regular basis you should be reaching for the toothpaste at least twice a day. Also, in addition to good oral hygiene, include some mints in your daily networking kit, you never know when you might need them.

How are your shoes looking?
You shower, you smell great, you are dressed to impress, nails clean, your teeth shine and your breath smells good. Why would you be wearing old shoes that have never seen polish and brush? Of course you wouldn’t do that. It takes a couple of minutes on a regular basis to make your shoes look good and they will last longer so saving you money.

How’s your vehicle looking?
The way we do one thing is the way we do everything. If you are driving around in rubbish tip, what impression do you think that creates? Whether you are a sales person travelling to appointments, a business consultant visiting a client or a trades person going to site, what does the state of your vehicle say about you to others? If your best customer or client walked up to your vehicle in a car park what might they think about your brand from what they see? Keep your vehicle looking good, inside and out, it may be the difference between getting or keeping business or losing more opportunities that you should be winning.

What impression are you creating – for everyone?
When you demonstrate respect for your own appearance you will automatically start to gain trust and confidence from others. How you look may be a strong indication of the way you are in business. It speaks of efficiency and effectiveness. Care about your appearance will help to persuade others to want to do business with you, it will also enormously help you to be referred.

When you receive a referral your first duty is to make the referrer look good. If the way you appear is not tip-top is there any wonder you are not getting the opportunities you deserve. It’s really simple, you wouldn’t risk your hard-won reputation by referring someone to your contacts who is going to create a bad impression about you, would you?

What shows on the outside is a reflection of what you are on the inside. Taking time to work on your image on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis is time well invested. Not only will you look better, you’ll feel better too and who knows what impact that might have on your wealth creation strategy.

Have a sparklingly brilliant week.