Six Top Tips for First Days: How To Make A Good First Impression

first impressionsIn life there are lots of first days – your first job interview, your first day at University, the first time you meet your partner’s family.

But as the autumn approaches and work becomes the centre of your world again, something important to consider is ‘first impressions’.

Don’t get me wrong, first impressions aren’t the most important thing to consider when you’re faced with a new opportunity but they are important.

If you make a good impression, your memory will be long lasting. You’ll be noticed. People will like you, and the favours will be much easier to take hold of. If you make a bad impression, similarly, it is one hard to remove.

This can be seen most obviously in the newspapers – if one celebrity does something wrong, we judge them for it… straight away. And we see them as that person for quite a while to come. The truth is this first impression is only an ‘impression’ that might have been a one-off, but judging is what humans do and in order to climb the ladder you have to be aware of (and not put off by) that.

So with this in mind, I’ve wrote below a six tip guide to help you in making a good first impression on your first days back to serious work, school or university.

Six Top Tips for Making A Good First Impression

1. Dress Appropriately

Let’s be honest here, appearance matters. If you go on your first day to college exposing your cleavage or to an interview with toothpaste stains on your suit, it’s not going to look good. Your clothes are chosen by you and therefore, people assume that they will say something about you.

The best way to start is on a clean slate, so ensure that you dress to fit in and think about how you look before you step one foot out of that door on your very first day. Remember: There’s always room for cleavage and toothpaste stains later on, if you particularly feel the need!

2. Don’t Be Cocky or Shy

Confident, outgoing people are naturally easier to talk to, so don’t be afraid to smile and greet new people. Open up and share your interests; what do you do, when you’re not there? On the flip side – don’t brag either.

It’s important to be as interested in others as you are interesting to them so let other people talk, ask lots of questions and try and make yourself seem as natural and approachable as possible. You are not a walking CV – so save the name-dropping for later!

3. Prepare

On the first day of school, make sure you’ve done all the work previously set. And before an interview, make sure you have some clever questions ready and some research behind your back. Remember, being organised is the best way to avoid any embarrassment or mistakes on your very first day.

So try and think ahead when you can, as you definitely don’t want to come off straight away as someone who isn’t ready for the day.

4. Remember Names & Faces

Okay, so we’ve all waved back at someone who we don’t think we’ve ever seen before. But now is not the time to call Jimmy, John or James, Jason – now’s the time to be observant. It’s psychologically proven that hearing our names called, improves the quality of our conversation.

So try to catch names from day one and focus on the conversations you have with others. This will not only help you tailor conversations later on, but also gain a network of friends straight away.

5. Use Open Body Language

A handshake won’t go down so well on your first day of college, but a handshake in the interview to get into college will. Before any ‘first’ consider your body language. For example, slouching conveys laziness while eye contact conveys interest.

So even if you don’t feel good about the way you look, try and keep an eye on what messages your body is sending out to the surrounding people. If your body language is open and positive, chances are that people will approach you.

6. Stay Calm

You were chosen for this interview/job/college because the big man (or woman) in charge thought you would fit in and complete the tasks ahead well. So stay calm and take the day piece by piece. It’s okay to be nervous, but if you can control it and stay calm – nobody will notice.

Everyone has ‘first days’, even your boss, so never feel like nerves will stop you from getting the opportunities you deserve. More often than not, the best way to make friends is to have a sense of friendliness and humour.

A Final Note

The most important thing to remember through all of this is to stay true to yourself. Never lie about what you’re interested in or what skills you di or do not have, because in the long run, you’ll just get caught out.

Instead make the most of your first days and the opportunities ahead, and try to better yourself. Making a great first impression is much easier than you think if you follow these simple tips.

Good Luck!

Wrote by Aimee Hall