Meeting New People

August 3, 2011
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you go through life, you meet new people to work with and to socialize with.  Sometimes, you hit things off like you have known each other for a long time, and other times you just do not have that “vibe” of friendship.  Perhaps you or the other person has forgotten on basic principle:  “There is no such thing as a second first impression.”  This can be an important concept to remember when you meet new people.  Most people get a perception of the person they are meeting in not only how they look, but also how they sound, how they act, and how they speak.

Use a Firm Handshake – Presenting yourself with a firm, but not crushing, handshake and perhaps cupping the person’s hand with your opposite hand will show that you are sincere in your pleasure at meeting the person.  Most people are fond of the human contact of a handshake, and having the appropriate strength shows confidence.

Smile – A smile is another way to show your sincerity in the pleasure of meeting someone new.  Make sure you are genuine in that pleasure, and it will be reflected on your face.  A new acquaintance will be impressed with your positive and friendly attitude, and will want to spend the time to get to know you.

Ask Them About Themselves – People love to talk about their accomplishments and the good things they have done in their lives.  In addition, giving them the opportunity to express their opinions and experiences allows you to learn more about them.  This is your doorway to a new relationship, if the chemistry is right.

Do Not Judge – Whether you are in agreement with a person’s opinions or opposed to them, you should keep an open mind and discuss issues rationally.  If you are unable to do so, walking away from the conversation may be the best thing.  Excuse yourself politely, express your pleasure at having met the person, and move away from any negative feelings that you felt in the conversation.  Your views do not have to be the same as someone else’s, but you cannot force your opinions on someone else.

Meeting new people does not have to be a game of chess, each making strategic moves.  It simply has to be a two-way street of effective communication and the realization that we are all individuals with different values and opinions.  In recognizing that simple fact and making your best first impression, you can find friendships that last a lifetime.

This post is brought to you by the good folks at Dale Carnegie Training of Philadelphia and Allentown, providers of professional development and management development courses and information in Philadelphia and Allentown. We would love to connect with you on Facebook as well.

Photo credit: The National Guard

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