By Audrey Okaneko
You know the old saying "first impressions can last a life time". Well,
I believe that second impressions can be more important than first
I would like to share a couple of stories with you. Several years ago, I found myself looking for a new business opportunity. I knew many people involved with many different opportunities. I began doing some research and found two opportunities that I really liked. The first opportunity, I called the woman, and left a message with her daughter. I called again a few days later and left a message on her answering machine. I never heard back from her.
The second opportunity that appealed to me, I sent the girl an email.
She phoned me 2 weeks later saying her computer had been broken. This
did not sit well with me, but ok, things happen, so I called her back
within 2 hours of her leaving the phone message. The next time I heard
from her was about 3 weeks later with an email apologizing profusely
for not contacting me sooner.
As you can see in the above 2 scenarios, while I was initially impressed with the people and the companies they represented, my second impression was so bad that I chose not to do business with either of them.
Follow up is so important that I believe more time should be spent on the follow up than the initial contact. Follow up is where the trust between you and the interested party begins. If you tell someone you will call Tuesday, then call Tuesday, even if you have to call from a pay phone, or cell phone. Let your contact know that they are important enough for you to follow through with your word. Show them that you will stand by your word no matter what.
If you tell a customer you will be there on Monday between 10 a.m. and 12 noon, then do whatever it takes to be there on time. No one likes being left waiting.
This second impression is going to set the stage for the relationship between you and your contact. Following up and following through will show your contact that you are dependable, and reliable, two very important qualities in our very competitive society.
When you are happy with someone’s service and dependability, you are much more apt to refer your circle of influence to them.
Another part of second impressions is making yourself available.
I would like to share with you a portion of an email I received from someone I was looking into doing business with:
"I basically am unavailable on thursday, friday, saturday and sunday from 2:30 till midnite. Early in the day is fine. Also, Mondays I am unavailable from noon till about 6:00. Early in the day is fine. Tuesday is not good for me. Wednesday I am flexible/open all day. Please pick a time that works for you. Let me know, and I will call you."
The hours she was free to do business were so unappealing to me, I took my business elsewhere. There was a 2 hour time difference between her and I, thus her asking me to call her prior to 9 a.m. my time, or on Wednesday.
If you want people to do business with you, then make yourself available to do business.
Second impressions are more than just follow up and follow through, they are your opportunity to show your contact why doing business with you is a good choice.
The next time you tell someone you will call or come over, don't make excuses, just do it!!
About the Author
Audrey Okaneko has worked at home since 1983. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or visited at www.scrapping-made-simple.com