Your first impression starts 12 feet away. This is the distance people see what you are wearing and how you are acting. This is the first chance you have to make sure that people see you in a positive, accepting light.
At 12 inches away you are now about to speak. People will notice the minute details of the way your face looks as you smile, frown, or grimace. People are judging your looks, your demeanor, and the way you carry yourself. The way you shake a hand, smell to others, and present yourself are now under the microscope and you should be aware that what you are about to say will forever place a note in people’s head about your level of maturity.
Finally, the first 12 words you speak are a reflection of your heritage, upbringing, and education level. Whether you like it or not, the person you are interacting with is taking a mental picture of you for future reference. What kind of picture have you given them? How can you make a difference in how you appear?
The mark we leave on the world is a made up of the thousands of appearances in other people’s memories. How you are perceived by others is the only yardstick we are all measured equally by. Make your impression a positive lasting one with others, and you will make your world a better place live in.
Excerpt from "Networking Like a Pro: Turning Contacts Into Connections", Misner, I. and Alexander, D. and Hilliard, B., ISBN# 9781613080023,2010, Entrepreneur Media Incorporated/Entrepreneur Press
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