First Impressions Last

A well-known truism, of course and one I was reminded of after a meeting I attended the other day. I began the forum with a simple sentence. One that put myself in the shoes of those on whom’s behalf we were outlining change and the impacts thereof.

It was meant to make people sit up, listen and think, as well as providing a tacit framework for the ensuing discussion.

I was told afterwards that this “first-person” approach had gone down well, and was “refreshing”. Then I heard the good old phrase ‘first impressions last”, thankfully in the context of mine being overwhelmingly positive.

It is incredible how true it rings. Whenever we stand up, kick-off a meeting or pitch, our first words have such power to shape what follows I can’t quite believe why people hardly ever seem to apply thought to them. Cast your own mind back to recent meetings. How did the person wanting to make the most influence handle their first impression? In most cases, I fancy you can identify improvements.

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