If you don’t already, think of a First Impression as THE ONLY Impression.
… and you only have 7 seconds to make it happen…
From the moment a person sees you for the first time, he or she begins the subconscious process of formulating their first impressions. And these impressions dictate all of their opinions that are soon to follow. Are you a person to approach or a person to avoid? Are you someone I would share with or someone I would withhold from? Do you appear to have authority and strength or are you weak and submissive? Are you confident, competent, likable, trustworthy… the list goes on and on.
The point is, these are all subconscious decisions that a person will make within 7 seconds of first laying eyes on you. The bad news; you can’t stop this process. The good news; you can curb those decisions in your favor and I will tell you how.
Because a first impression happens so rapidly, it often is done so solely on visual cues. That’s not to say that verbal cues aren’t important, they are, however the majority of the first impression process is based on optics. There are 6 keys behaviors that can improve first impressions, and with them, your patient’s opinion about you and your service. Here’s the first;
Don’t Be Late
This is easily the hardest, but the most important factor when it comes to first impressions. People’s time is important, especially in an age where the pace of life moves so fast.
People expect that when they make an appointment they’ll be seen in a timely manner. This goes double for services they pay for. It’s suggested that being just five minutes late for a new patient without greeting or connecting with them reduces the patient’s expectation of seeing improvements within that session. In fact, perceived improvements from your treatment can reduce by as much as 50-80%.
Do your best to be on time, and if you can’t, be sure to make the time to at least personally acknowledge and greet the patient. Greeting the patient, acknowledging your awareness of their arrival, and informing them of the extra time you’ll require can be the savior of any first impression.
So you’re armed with the knowledge, get out there and give it a try… and stay turned for the remaining 5 keys behaviors, coming to you in my next post…
Mob your Mind