5 tips to make a great first impression


I met my daughter’s new teacher today. And in one minute I knew it was going to be a good year. It made me think, “What makes people like you immediately?” What is that magical combination of skills and features that make you the type of person others want to be around? Have you consciously thought about it? 

One of the keys to your influence ability is being the type of person others want to be around. 

When I first started teaching pharma folks how to be more influential, I focused on WHAT they said and did. I then realized that those skills would be useless if we couldn’t get in front of HCPs. So I moved on to teach them to communicate their WHY – their purpose – or their focus on patients, to gain trust and access. 

I realized then that there would still be some people who wouldn’t have influence. Why? Because they don’t behave in a way that inspires others to want to be around them. They need to work on WHO they are and enhance their emotional intelligence, attitude, energy and enthusiasm. 

There are decisions you make every minute of the day around your behavior that impact your ability to engage and influence others. To help you be more engaging, here are five simple tips. My daughter’s teacher demonstrated them all in our quick interaction. 

Of course a smile is really tip #1. It is an evolutionary sign of good intent. It immediately lets barriers down. So, just remember to SMILE:

S – stand/sit up straight. Proper posture says a lot about your confidence and attitude. Your body speaks louder than your words.
M – mind the time! Always be the first to arrive. You will appear more relaxed and prepared and you will show them how much you value their time.
I – I like you. Open your heart to authentically like them. People like people who like them! 
L – listen. Be present such that the person feels like she/he is the only one in the room. Ask about things that interest the other person most. Find your common ground on a personal level.
E – emit positivity. Nobody wants to be around a negative Nelly! Your emotions are contagious. Be mindful of what you are spreading.

And then relax and enjoy your new connection. You will be awesome!

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