When it comes to first impressions, I suppose the way you look does have an impact on what comes next. Image does play a part. I agree.
My message today involves a reminder thanks to an experience I had in Oneonta, NY. This little town is “upstate,” and perfectly positioned between cow pastures.
My wife and I were visiting a plumbing supply store in search of a few important water-related items when we entered a plumbing supply company that was advertised to fit the bill.
Greeting us from behind the desk, a few paces off the front door, came a voice from a woman who was all of 4-foot seven inches and, I am guessing, not a day under 40 years old. To avoid any gender-related backlash, I mentioned the description above because this woman was all of 4-foot seven and probably in her forties. By first glance, this woman could not possibly know anything about “plumbing fixtures.” I was about to ask if her boss was in the building.
It took maybe fifteen minutes before we were talking, laughing, joking, and discussing all sorts of bathroom related topics. This woman not only had a personality that could stop a NASCAR in its tracks, but she knew her bathroom fixtures like she was born in a plumbing supply warehouse. (I didn’t ask.)
Bottom Line: She was refreshing… and good. She was good… and refreshing. She was helpful and fun. Did I mention she was refreshing?
Who would have thought this to be the case based on my first impression? I was reminded of that Scottish woman on the British Idol Show who could sing like an angel? First impressions are a fact of life, but they can be very dangerous, and often misleading. The truth is that knowledge and personality win out in the end… if they can get to the end. First impressions do account for something, but it is the final impression that counts for more.
We all have our built-in excuses: Too old. Too young. Too light. Too heavy. Too tall. Too short. Too soon. Too late. Wrong time. Wrong place. Wrong company. Too cheap. Too expensive.
Some excuses are better than others. But the cream will still rise to the top. If you are good, you will be good. Hang the excuses.
There is an old saying that reminds us: “Play the hand we are dealt.” A second reminder tells you to “dance with who brung-ya.” You have the tools. You have the industry. You have the marketplace. You have the products. You have the “want.” You have the same “time” everyone else has. So, what are you waiting for? Stop excusing yourself to distraction and get out there and make more people glad they know you.
My new plumber-friend in Oneonta made both Barbara and me glad we walked into her faucet shop. It is now time for you to do your thing. Ready? Set? Go!
Mike Marchev is a down-to-earth motivating sales trainer, author and business coach who specializes in the travel industry. For a complimentary copy of Mike’s 12-Word Marketing Plan send him an email at firstname.lastname@example.org with the number “12” in the Subject Box. His daily column is made possible by AmaWaterways.