Your first impression matters alot because it can be the bridge between starting a successful business relationship or finishing with a one-off meeting. It is so easy to make a negative first impression on someone, most likely without recognising you’ve done so.
But on the other hand, It’s much harder to make a positive impression, so you must be ready to put in some effort into your introductions.
Proper introduction of yourself tells people who you are and it should encourage people to engage with you in a conversation of lasting relationship. You need to sell yourself and feel confident while doing so because this will put others at ease.
How exactly are you expected to properly introduce yourself to stand out?
START BY NOT FEELING AWKWARD
‘What do I say?’ ‘What if it comes out wrong?’ ‘Heyyyy is she looking at me?’Get rid of the battle going on in your inner thoughts and be comfortable in your space. The setting is exactly what it is meant for – networking. Chances are, they are interested in talking to you too.
So do not feel shy approaching anyone. On what to say, I’ll let you know soon enough.
YOU DON’T WANT TO BE OVERLY EXCITED
It could be your all time fav, but to give that coordinated professional impression, you don’t want to be overly excited. You can smile while giving or receiving a handshake, and then tell them in one sentence how you’ve been an ardent follower of theirs and how you’ve learnt so much from them, but keep calm.
TAKE YOUR TIME
Take your time especially while saying your name so it registers. Give a firm handshake. Then continue with it’s a pleasure meeting you or nice to meet you.If you are the superior and you want to build more connection, you can give them a tap briefly on their shoulder while giving or receiving a handshake.
MAKE EYE CONTACT
This shows off your confidence and willingness to connect. Do not be afraid to meet their eyes. At least for those few seconds, you should not be caught looking elsewhere.
TAKING IT FURTHER
You can ask how they’ve been enjoying/enjoyed the event, throw in what one of the speakers said (that resonates with your brand) and how you plan to start applying it. Make sure what you choose is naturally connected to how you can help them solve a problem or two so if the conversation continues you would not sound off or desperate talking about your business.
The first phase of your introduction will determine how long or short the conversation will be; whether they want to engage you further and probably do business with you. Do it well.
Reference: O.S.N (Headstart Africa)