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July 2019

First impressions matter!

Written by Bakang Kganyago
Workplace Hygiene

Just like you cannot reverse time, you cannot remake a first impression. Its effects are long-lasting and may take some time (if not a lifetime) to change that perception. This is why there is a myriad of experts sharing tips on how to prevent forming bad impressions and studying behaviour so that you can use positive cues to your advantage.

Common themes from these tips include personal grooming, ensuring you’re dressed well and smell great, speaking clearly and greeting with a smile. Basically, everything that oozes positivity and confidence.

Now ask yourself, how often do we think of our workplace or business as an extension of ourselves? How is your business oozing confidence that provides countless first impressions? 

Businesses that are known to be industry leaders and pop culture icons are those that are treated like people. These businesses have an identity and personality - these identities effectively communicate their message on the first encounter and confidently leave a lasting impression that eventually evolves into brand loyalty.

Personal Grooming

person looking to make a lasting impression, should first start with personal grooming. While you’re cleaning up your unruly beard or tending to your personal hygiene, so should your business. Though beardless, your business should also tend to it’s “personal hygiene”. You need to ensure you have a daily cleaning routine in place for your office. This includes your bathroom, that should be clean and adequately stocked. This can be done by enlisting a professional hygiene partner like Initial Hygiene, who can supply your hand washing, hand drying, toilet paper and air freshening solutions but they can also provide services such as deep cleaning (just as you would “enlist a dentist” to do what your daily tooth brushing can’t). 

Dress Well and Smell Great

There is much to support the view that it is clothes that wear us, and not we, them; we may make them take the mould of our body, but they mould our hearts, our brains, our tongues to their liking." - Virginia Woolf (1882-1941) British novelist

As you know the way you dress speaks louder than words, it defines you and forms the basis of the message you’re sending to the world. 

You’re probably wondering how this applies to your business? There are ways in which you can “dress up” your office to help form a great first impression, this too should fit the brand image and identity you're trying to communicate to potential clients, for example, the use of colour within a business can significantly influence consumer experience, take a look at our blog Yellow Banana Good, Green Banana Bad for more information on this topic. Initial’s Signature Colour range was designed with brand personality and colour psychology in mind, helping business owners convey a bold statement that correlates with their brand.

The same can be said about smell, take note of how you’ll often have a negative opinion about someone if they smell bad, associating different negative connotations with the person, This is due to what author Authur Dobrin D.S.W calls “The Halo Effect',' the phenomenon whereby the perception of positive/negative qualities in one thing or part gives rise to perception of similar qualities in related things or in the whole. This applies to business too, in our previous blog The Power of Smell we talked about how unpleasant or strong odours can easily discourage the keenest of buyers. 

Initial Hygiene offers scenting solutions that help instill a positive impression just as you would with your perfume.

Another effective way to add a special touch to your environment is through plants.  You will be amazed by the difference a strategically placed plant can make in your reception, take a look at some examples.

It is important to evaluate the ways in which your business communicates. Improving your company's image is a simple way to improve your potential client’s opinion of you, reinforcing trust and competency in your field. 

Dress your business to make a good impression, as you would yourself.

When asked “Who gives better first impressions? You or your business?” Your answer to that question should be “yes”.

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Bakang Kganyago

Bakang Kganyago

Bakang is a Digital Marketing Executive for Rentokil Initial. A germaphobe at heart, he's passionate about learning and sharing insights on how to defeat the enemy we cannot see. Join his journey as he writes about the impact of germs in our daily lives.

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