When growing your business, you must be able to make a good first impression on others from the get-go. Investors, prospective employees, and customers are going to make split-second judgments about your character and business, so you have to be able to gain their interest and confidence immediately.
Luckily, there are small ways to remodel your actions and appearance to boost your chances of making a positive and lasting first impression. Here are just a few:
Dress like a CEO
Whether we like it or not, most people judge books by their covers. One of the first things that people in the business world recognize about others is the way they dress. Ask yourself: if candidates are interviewing for your business, would you be more likely to be impressed by the one in jeans and a flannel or the one in a well-fitted suit or blouse? The same goes for all levels of the corporate ladder, including the owner.
If you’re an entrepreneur, you have to dress the part to portray your organization, professionalism, and likability to others, and likewise, the success of your business. Check out a guide to suggested businesswear, or solicit the advice of a professional stylist to get started.
Like your dress, your appearance also needs to speak to your confidence and professionalism. Research has shown that the more you stick to traditional signs of beauty (i.e., clear skin, straight teeth, and healthy hair), the more positively people will remember you. But, it’s also important that you balance this with your own sense of self-assuredness and take whatever steps necessary to ensure you feel confident in the way you look. Maintaining your self-esteem will help you give off an intriguing air of trustworthiness.
If you have any insecurities in your physical appearance, address them before significant events. Consider seeing a dermatologist to help clear up acne, talking with a doctor about treatments to address hair loss, or using an aligner to straighten your teeth. Do whatever you can or want so that you’re able to put your best foot forward and enter any networking event, interview, or pitch meeting with confidence.
Be aware of your nonverbal signals
Your body, movements, and expressions often have a surprising impact on the way others perceive you. Everything from a smile to fluid hand movements can leave others with a lasting impression of honesty and approachability about you.
Just be aware of any negative nonverbal cues you may be sending unknowingly. In America, a furrowed brow and crossed arms can come across as cold and unfriendly, but other cultures may have different understandings of body language signals. If you are interacting with international businesspeople, be sure to study up on the cultural meanings of certain movements in various countries.
For more ideas on how to adjust your first impression, check out this informative guide from men’s grooming and wellness company, hims.