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  • Writer's pictureThe Next Step

6 tips for making a great first impression and be taken seriously

First impressions matter. Don`t let anyone fool you. We make up our mind about people in just 3 seconds! That is insane.

Here are 6 tips to make those 3 seconds count. 1. Be on time Punctuality is important! It doesn't matter if you`re meeting a friend, going to a job/university interview, on a date or to a networking event. Be. On. Time. Pro tip: If you are unsure of where you`re going or how long your journey is going to be, aim to be 15-20 min early. That way you can find the right location and make sure you know how to get in. Then you can kill time by taking a walk around the block, going to the restroom and check you look alright, take a few deep breaths, and walk in calm, confident, PUNCTUAL, and ready. 2. “Why am I here?” Always make sure you enter a room/situation knowing what you are doing here - are you there to make friends? Network? Impress potential employers? Find the love of your life? Having a clear idea makes you look more put-together, prepared and confident. Pro tip: For ultimate positive effect on people, practice your “smize” or smiling with your eyes. It makes you look positive and invested. A little like a proud grandmother listening to her grandkids tell their stories. 3. Look like the best version of you Does this mean you need to look like a supermodel? No! Does it mean wearing a full face of makeup and super high heels? Definitely not! What it does mean is making an effort with your appearance. Wear clean clothes, don't go overboard with perfume or makeup, keep it simple but sharp. Look like yourself, but the `pro` version. Pro tip: If you`re having trouble with this point, imagine you are you, but in the future. What would a successful, happy, established you wear for this event? Don`t go buying designer clothes - work with what you already have - but keep that future image in mind. 4. Think about body language Friendly eye contact, good posture, firm handshakes - those are all signs of open communication and good body language. It makes people subconsciously feel more at ease around you and take you more seriously. Pro tip: If you ever get nervous before a job interview, presentation or event, try the superhero pose - demonstrated here by the cast of Grey's Anatomy. 5. Pay attention to names We all forget names every now and then. Especially at a party or networking event, where people don't have name tags and they introduce themselves super fast. If you didn't quite get someone`s name - don`t be afraid to ask again. Especially when meeting people from different countries - names are a lot trickier for people with different backgrounds. So make sure you understand them. And make sure you say yours clearly and loud enough for people to hear. Pro tip: To make your brain remember names better, say them out loud. For example: “What id your name?” “My name is Nicholas” “It is nice to meet you Nicholas! I`m Maya” After this try and say their name a few more times in casual conversation so your brain really remembers it! 6. Show interest There really is nothing worse than talking to someone who clearly isn't interested in what you have to say. Don`t make that mistake in situations, where it matters most! Even if it sometimes feels like you don't really want to know EVERYTHING. Look at the person who is talking to you. Pro Tip: Studies show that when we are interested in what someone has to say, we concentrate on their mouth when they speak. This is a good tip to keep in mind when going on job interviews or any other meetings, that can benefit your future.

If you want more tips on making good first impressions read this article here and/or this one here.

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