Meeting new people is something we all have to do on a regular basis – even those who shy away from social situations. Whether you’re meeting someone for business, or purely in a casual setting, a good first impression can make a big difference to your continued relationship with the other person. So here are a few top tips to help you get off on the right foot.
1) Make Eye Contact:
The first thing you should make sure you are doing is making eye contact. This helps create the impression of honesty in others, and also shows that you are paying them attention.
2) Smile With Feeling:
Smiling at the other person helps create an atmosphere of warmth and disarms the tension that can exist when first meeting a stranger. It’ll help you both relax. But make sure that your smile is given with genuine good feeling. Half-hearted smiles are easy to spot and tend to put others off.
3) Offer A Firm Handshake:
When shaking the hand of a stranger, ensure that you grasp firmly. A limp hand can give the impression that you aren’t all that interested in the other person. However, you don’t want to go overboard and deliver a crushing handshake that leaves the other in pain, that seems inconsiderate and over the top.
4) Ask Questions About The Other Person:
When you’re talking to someone for the first time, be sure to ask them questions about themselves. Find out about their hobbies, their business interests, their family and so on. Everybody likes to be asked questions and given a chance to speak about themselves. Giving someone else this opportunity will leave the other person feeling good about the conversation they had with you.
5) Don’t Go On About Yourself:
Some people love to talk about themselves, but this really isn’t a good way to strike up a new relationship. It’s okay to talk about yourself, but wait until you’re asked, or until there’s an appropriate reason – for example, you find out that you share a common interest with the other person.
If all you do is talk about yourself when you first meet, the other person may get the impression you’re self-obsessed, and aren’t interested in anything else.
6) Use The Other Person’s Name:
It’s a good idea to use the other person’s name shortly into the conversation. Not only does it show that you remembered it, but it also helps generate a friendly tone that makes conversation easier.
7) Listen Closely:
To really get off on the right foot, it’s important to listen closely to what the other person is saying and respond. Nothing is more of a turn off than feeling like you’re being ignored in a conversation, and by being attentive to what the other person is saying you show that you’re interested and that you care – two key foundations for any relationship.
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