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When you are geared up to face the first day at office or at a new organization, or a meeting with a business-client, you are eager to put your best foot forward, and lay the first stepping stone towards career development. To accomplish this, you want to make the best first impression to build a great rapport, a long-term relationship with your working-partners. How can the first impression create a lasting imprint of career success?
Why is the first impression important for career development ?
If you remember your school days, every academic year, you would have faced the challenge of bonding with a new set of classmates, a new teacher and a new environment. Striving to give it your best in academics and other activities, your aim would have been to win the respect of your classmates and teachers. The first step in your new class was always oriented towards creating the best first impression through various channels. The first impression was always regarded as a “bank” to serve your long-term goals for the academic year -for recognition, merit or certificates of excellence.
Similarly at work, the first impression is like the foundation for a great work-life and progressive career development. It is the living image of your persona, potential and your person, you wish to convey to those you interact with, in the first instance.
You could reap the benefits of the first impression for: building rapport with your colleagues and showcasing your potential to the seniors.
5-tips for making the best first impression
As first impressions make lasting imprints, here are a few tips on how to create the best first impression on your first day at the workplace:
Pay attention to your dress sense: All your professionalism, sense of dignity is best “conveyed” through the kind of dress you choose to wear. So, dress appropriately for the occasion and make sure it is in-sync with the work-ethos.
Be a good listener, in-tune with the conversation: While group conversations take place, it pays to be a good listener before you start to talk. Remember, a good dialogue implies good communication and paves way for good rapport.
Initiate topics with reference to the situation: When you bump into a colleague for the first time(tea-time for instance), the best way to thaw the ice would be by relating to the existing situation. It could be anything ranging from the latest news impacting the organization or the recent developments in the economy, which might open up new prospects for career development. Such references strike instant engagement and draws in the attention of the person, with whom you are trying to relate with.
Be present: “Being present” does not point to any reference to attendance. The present here refers to presence of mind and being in the moment. When you are fully involved in the moment, your listening capacity increases, you participate actively, exhibit enthusiasm and are proactive, conveying to those around you that you are keen and focused- focus being one of the chief attributes for career development. Avoid the distractions, of mobile phones or other gadgets, which can ruin your first impression.
Let your body language be streamlined with your intent: If you are hard-driven about making the best impression and thereby lay the foundation for career development, you should be conscious about your body language. As a chief tool of non-verbal communication, wrong body language can throw spanner in the works. For instance, if you are into active discussion about new implementations, and you are hearing out what the other team members have to say, show keen listening qualities by not slouching or keeping your hands on the forehead, which are indicative of lack of interest.
It boils down to the simple truth that first impressions can last till the last-lap of career-development at your work place. Before you take that leap forward into the new work place, look up these tips, to get-set-going in the right direction.