The seven second rule

Ms Manners,

I heard that people make an opinion of you in the first seven seconds. Is that true?


First impressions are tough because you only get one chance. Now I will spare you the clichés we often hear about first impressions, but you are right. You only have seven seconds to make that good first impression.


Seven seconds to impress isn’t, really, a long time. That seven seconds may make or break your relationship with a person.


In that time you have to come in with a strong, confident presence, you have to shake hands correctly and with conviction (this is so important. Do not give weak handshakes, it’s a sign of a weak person and that’s not the brand you want to portray). You have to smile, make eye contact, speak with poise and the right tone.


Put that all together and what many people think is that the most important aspect in this first seven seconds is the words they speak.


However, in actual fact, the spoken word only makes up 7% importance. It is the way you say those words that is more important: your tone of voice makes up 38%.


But of course there is still 55% missing, what is that? It’s the whole package, all the other stuff we talked about – the non-verbal communication.


The handshakes, presence, smiles, nods and eye contact. This is what is most important and again, you only have seven seconds to do it all in.


Actually count out this seven seconds to bring home how little time you really have to do all this in …1…2…3…4…5…6…7.


That’s it; that was your seven seconds to do all the tasks to be likable, to be professional, to be what they expect and want.


There are no second chances so make it a memorable, strong, impressive seven seconds and give a lasting impact. Do all that properly and you will do very well in this world.


Enjoy your new confidence and the game of etiquette.


Kind Regards,

Ms. Manners


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