What's Your First ImpressionDo you recognize just how important your first impression is? What your customers see or hear when they first encounter your business is so important, and yet many businesses just ignore this key ingredient of their business. Whether it’s the receptionist who answers your phone, or the person behind your counter, you all have a person who makes the first impression on your customers, and they hold the first impression of your business in the palm of their hand.

The success (or failure) of your business depends entirely on that all-important first impression. Would you really want to do business with a company that hires a surly receptionist, a clerk that ignores you when you walk in the front door, or an answering system that routs you from place to place with no human contact? The first impression these people give represents the entire company, and if it turns the customer off, chances are, they’ll never deal with your company again.

A positive first impression starts a good relationship with your customers, while a poor first impression will usually end the relationship right then and there. Think about how many other people that customer will talk to, and you can see how a bad first impression can affect your business. For example, have you ever called a company and been treated as if you’re interrupting their day, rather than a valued client? Would you do business with them again? Try calling your own company and see how you’re treated. Would you do business with yourself or your organization?

If you don’t like the way your first impressions are being handled, here’s how to change your organization. Make sure your staff truly enjoys engaging your customers. They should have super written and verbal communication skills, and great phone customer service. They should have empathy with your customers, and know when to use it. They should enjoy serving others, and have a good work ethic. They should always be positive, cheerful, outgoing, and professional, and they should smile! They should work as a team and have integrity. If they have these qualities, they should offer a good first impression, and you know, you never get a second chance to make a good first impression.

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