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Whether you like it or not, a positive first impression can do wonders in fostering a strong personal and professional connection to those in your industry. It’s the first step in building out your network and establishing the tone of your personal brand. Starting to feel some pressure to nail it?

First, take a breath and remember that whenever you’re having these initial interactions, it’s also a first impression for the other person too! So, what can you do to help your technique? Check out three tips that we think will help you make a great first impression.

1.  Wardrobe
Your physical appearance is typically the first thing your conversation partner will notice about you. This evaluation is said to take about three seconds, so it’s key for you to have your outfit on point. A good rule of thumb is to check for a suggested dress code to help you gauge the appropriate attire for the occasion.

The number one thing to remember is that you should feel good about what you’re wearing. You confidence will boost if you feel good about yourself! So make sure your clothing fits appropriately, as you don’t want to find yourself fidgeting with your clothes during a conversation. This movement can really throw off the whole conversation and hinder the start to a good first impression.

2.  Body Language
Understanding the science behind body language can help you make a positive nonverbal impression to those around you. To start, think about what postures you notice in others that make you feel negatively. Maybe crossing your arms, non-stop yawning, or a lack of eye contact come to mind? Once you’ve zeroed in on those behaviors, be extra aware of movements!

The goal is to show your speaking partner that you are confident, thoughtful, and invested in the conversation. Once you’ve figured out this body language, you can be more mindful on bringing positive postures into any new interaction.

Pro-tip: Imitation is a form of flattery, right? Whenever possible, mirror the body language of your speaking partner. This posture should help ease your conversation into a more natural and comfortable rhythm. Who doesn’t love to feel like you are on the same page?

3.  Active Listening
Let’s be honest: Most of us love to talk about ourselves in a social setting, especially with someone new. So, how can you use this to your advantage? Being a strong active listener will typically grant you an almost immediate leg up when it comes to gaining someone’s favor.

The first step in being a strong active listener is to stop interrupting! We all want to believe that our thoughts are going to be revolutionary in the conversation, but the real power comes from holding your tongue. When you do respond to your partner, try to provide constructive feedback and limit (if possible) any judgement statements. Much like your body language, repeating keywords that your partner has mentioned will also present you in positive light and show that you’re really listening to what they have to say.

Ultimately it comes down to determining your personal goal for each first impression. Are you trying to network socially or are you looking at creating a professional partnership? By being cognisant of your intentions, you’ll be able to tailor each interaction to provide a well-constructed first impression for any occasion!

Are you also looking to make a good first impression with your potential event attendees? Using the right event registration system can help make your event more appealing and save you time to focus on other tasks! However, you’ll soon find dozens of different event registration systems that all sound the same. If you’re looking for a little direction, check out our guide below to find out the five questions you need to ask vendors to land the perfect online registration system for your next event!

5 Questions to Ask: A Guide for Event Planners