Steps to Building a Lasting Impression!

Can you remember a time when you met someone that you simply cannot forget?

Hаvе уоu еvеr wоndеrеd what made them so memorable to you? What makes their presence so electric? Why do we gravitate and support their cause and passion? What makes their energy so addictive to the point that we all want to just help them even before they ask?

Here is the secret to their presence. They are not “networking”. When they meet you, they are genuinely interested in your present story and think of ways that they can be of service to you, even if it means the simple temporary act of making you feel relaxed and lifting your spirits. These unforgettable individuals emulate a “giving” mindset.

This practice serves as the building blocks of suссеѕѕful rеlаtіоnѕhір-buіldіng. It requires a lot mоrе thаn juѕt hаndіng оut buѕіnеѕѕ саrdѕ, and a firm handshake in the beginning of a meeting. We value their helpful attitude and their openness. It makes us believe in оur success if  wе соllаbоrаtе wіth thеm. It allows them to create a special bond with us that make us interested in staying connected with them and/or be inspired by them.

When this “memorable” person operates from the “giving” mindset over and over again, it defines their personal brand and sets them apart from the crowd.

In Man's Search for Meaning Viktor Frankl writes, “Don't aim at success. The more you aim at it and make it a target, the more you are going to miss it. For success, like happiness, cannot be pursued; it must ensue, and it only does so as the unintended side effect of one's personal dedication to a cause greater than oneself or as the by-product of one's surrender to a person other than oneself.”

Because these “memorable” individuals center their lives on core values and a cause that is greater than them, they inspire and empower others. 

Amy Cuddy, a Harvard Business School social psychologist who has studied first impressions states that when we meet someone for the first time, we ask two questions: “We’re judging how warm and trustworthy the person is, and that’s trying to answer the question, “What are the person’s intentions toward me?’ And we’re also asking ourselves, “How strong and competent is this person?”

In my decades of work as an image consultant, personal development consultant, and a business coach, I have observed that the “giving” mindset opens our heart to embrace the other person and meet them wherever they are in their life, without judgment. Their warmth makes us feel taken care of in their presence and allows us to trust them. It sets the tone for their intentions in this new relationship from the start. With those first impressions locked in, we believe that this individual will do what it takes to help even if they don’t have all the answers and we perceive that as competence and trustworthy. Cuddy said that these two traits, trustworthiness and confidence, account for 80 to 90 percent of first impressions.

Since first impressions can heavily influence whether we will get the next job, a chance to be a part of a business partnership, be considered a lead for a project, get the next promotion etc. it is worth being mindful of these steps to making the most of your next connection. An easy way to pave the way to a giving mindset is asking whom ever we are meeting (not just the first time but every time and anytime you meet someone), “How can I help you today?” Or hearing their story and then asking, “How can I help you with this?” Even if they shrug and say that they don’t know, it creates the space for giving of both parties naturally and sets the tone for collaboration, making us memorable and leaving a lasting impression.

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This article is written by Felora Ziari-Derakhshani. Felora is the author of “The CODE”, a personal transformational platform created to empower individuals to unlock their inner genius and achieve greater success. She is an international motivational speaker, author, and a consultant for cultivating leadership and maximizing human potential. With 30 years of corporate and non-profit experience, Felora offers her expertise to companies and individuals seeking optimal performance through a tangible system of exploration and discovery.  Felora is an electromechanical engineer graduated from Oxford, England.  She worked as an engineering manager for over 16 years in the nuclear industry before starting several ventures and women’s non-profit organizations.