Most of us want to be remembered fondly or to make a great impression and be noted for our uniqueness. Thomas Corley’s book - “Change your Habits, Change your Life”- provides insight on how self-made millionaires accomplished that over his 5-year study. Three habits in specific – dubbed as “rich habits” (according to Thomas) - are:
Being proficient in these three provides steppingstones to savvy professionalism and builds trust – for clients, team members, leadership, and individuals.
Who does not want to make a memorable impression on others? Well, most of us would answer this question positively.
Some of us do not wish to be noticed. Good luck with that. ‘People-watching’ is still a worldwide major sport and, short of never leaving your burrow, we all are under the observation of others.
So here are straightforward ways to make a lasting impression that will bring a smile and a kind memory to those you encounter … whether it’s a chance encounter or a long-term encounter.
1. Make direct eye contact:
a. When you do this, it sends a message about you:
i. You’re approachable, friendly, probably likable.
ii. You’re confident.
iii. You have nothing to hide. Hence, the saying: “the eyes are the windows to the soul.”
iv. Direct eye contact also says that you are authentic and it gives a sense of trustworthiness. We highly value transparency and trustworthiness in others.
2. Smile easily and warmly. You don’t have to go around grinning, but when you do make eye contact with someone, a friendly smile will put others at ease and open a door of connection. Men, in particular, don’t seem to realize that smiling conveys confidence, power, and leadership. Some people may want to know what the joke is or what you’re up to and that can conjure up some light and quick conversation.
3. Give a nod of acknowledgment. A slight nod of the head is an easy way to acknowledge another person positively. It always makes me feel like it’s an unspoken recognition of our common connection with each other and shared humanity.
4. Never pass up the opportunity to do an introduction … of yourself or others
a. The rule is to introduce a higher-ranking person to a lower-ranking person. In cultures where rank is highly valued, this is an important distinction. In American culture, we are more casual with rank although we do honor people with titles: Doctor, President, Mayor, etc.
b. Regardless of the rule, always exercise the opportunity to do an introduction. It can be simply stated as “Ms./Mr. Higher Rank, this is (name). (Name), this is Ms./Mr. Higher Rank.
c. Add information about each person that helps foster conversation beyond the introduction: items/activities they have in common or their vocation or relationships they may recognize of each other, etc.
d. If you are joining a conversation or wish to strike up a conversation, introduce yourself giving your full name and information that can begin a conversation.
5. Handshake – Yes! Handshakes are BACK!! No more fist, elbow, or foot bumping!
This is a simple offer of friendship before you establish a friendship.
i. In the U.S., anyone can make the offer:
a. It is usually well-received if the child extends their hand first.
b. In cultures where rank is highly regarded, it is better to allow the woman to extend her hand first. If she doesn’t, you are not encouraged to do so.
ii. The handshake:
1. Extend your hand, thumb up, fingers together.
2. Connect the “web” between the thumb and first finger with the other person’s “web”.
3. Use a firm grip, but do not exaggerate it to show power or control.
4. Pump 2-3 times, relax and release.
5. It is not recommended to use both hands as this comes across as overly friendly.
Introducing others or yourself with warmth and confidence (in all situations) opens doors for connection, relationships and opportunities. According to Thomas Corley’s study of self-made millionaires, this is one key skill that leads to success. Watch for Part 2 & 3 to learn more.
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