How To Make Your Last Impressions Count

Everyone talks about first impressions and how you have just seconds before someone sizes you up. Some research shows that a tenth of a second is all people need to determine if you are trustworthy. First impressions matter because you won’t have time to charm your prospective buyers or talk about your background. However, last impressions count just as much, asserts Scott Cochrane, vice president – international for Willow Creek Association.

Unlike a first impression, last impressions happen more than once. A last impression is simply the impact you made in your most recent interactions with clients, prospects and colleagues. Cochrane says a last impression is the leadership deposit you made with a person, team or group. These last impressions are powerful, he adds. How you leave a conversation or meeting will lead others to form their view of your leadership.

Have you ever considered how to make a better last impression? Cochrane says there are a few ways you can be intentional about your last impressions with others. We outline his thoughts in this issue of Promotional Consultant Today.

Send a clear message with your last impression. Clarity is key in every interaction. If your message to others is unclear, they will think of you as a leader who is unsure or uncertain about where you are leading them, notes Cochrane. Know what you want to convey, stick to your message and ensure that others understand what you are expressing.

Show respect—always. Leaders set the tone. They don’t wait for others to show respect to them—they are gracious and respectful first. You may not always agree with your colleagues, and you may find yourself working with difficult clients. However, Cochrane says that to make your last impressions count, you should always treat others with the utmost respect. When other people leave the conversation knowing that you always respected them, everyone wins.

Genuinely connect with those in your path. To make your last impressions count, remember that the people around you aren’t just your coworkers and clients—they’re people with many diverse interests and needs. Recognize this by working to build genuine connections and taking an interest in their lives. If you do this, others will come away from the connection feeling like you really cared about them.

Show the way forward. Cochrane points out that every time you connect with someone, you make a vision deposit. This means every casual conversation, every Zoom meeting and every client call is a chance to remind others what they are working toward and why it matters. Seize every opportunity to share your vision and map out the path to achieving that vision.

Every interaction matters—even ones that may seem small. Think about how you want to be remembered and the impact you hope to make on those around you. First impressions are important, but last impressions are the ones that stick. Remember that a last impression is the lasting impression, so make it count.

Compiled by Audrey Sellers

Source: Scott Cochrane is vice president – international, Willow Creek Association.: 

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