When is the last time you consciously set out to make a fantastic first impression? We often think of first impressions as something we deploy for job interviews and first dates, however, your road to excellence and success (no matter how you define success) is paved with the conscious efforts of making a series of great impressions.

Recently, I was invited to speak to one of the largest and top performing real estate companies in Virginia. The audience was a mixture of seasoned pros and eager new representatives.

One exercise I frequently do with most audiences is I ask them to imagine they are about to perform at Carnegie Hall in New York City. They are some of the top musicians in the world, and are about to perform a symphony to a sold-out audience.

What do you think would happen if they took the stage wearing workout clothes instead of formal wear? Would that affect the audience's perception of them?

For tonight's performance, we are summoning the legendary Frank Sinatra. I have had the honor of personally playing with Frank Sinatra, and one element that the entire orchestra agreed upon was that he intentionally set out to make a staggeringly awesome first impression.

Frank Sinatra walked out on stage with a big smile on his face, standing tall and fit, wearing a black tuxedo that fit him to perfection. He made eye contact with his audience, making them feel as if he were singing to them in his living room and they were honored guests. The audience were mesmerized by Sinatra.

One success example that everyone could use in their world today is to simply smile and dress in clothes that fit you. Also, stand or sit tall, don't slouch.

Tap into your Internal "Wow"
I asked my audience to imagine that they had just sold a half million-dollar property. (and earned a nice commission since they are Realtors).

Every one of them stood with their shoulders back, they made direct eye contact, and they spoke with clear enthusiasm.

The way you carry yourself creates a picture in people's mind. Your prospects don't know if you have sold everything you've touched in the past 72 hours or if you feel like you couldn't close a ziplock bag at this moment... other than the way you present yourself.

Takeaway from this example: Practice carrying yourself in a confident manner.

Becoming a conscious complimenter.
One of the best illustrations of the power of compliments came from Dr. George W. Crane's psychology class at Northwestern University. Dr. Crane believed in the application of his teachings, not just in the memorization of his lessons.

He created the Compliment Club. Every day his students were to pay an honest compliment to each of three different persons... for 30 consecutive days. He also had the students journal the experiences.

Dr. Crane required the students write a theme paper about their experiences. He wanted them to note the changes they noted in the people around them, as well as how this experience altered their own outlook.

The students realized that by consciously complimenting others, they were motivated, encouraged, and inspired as well. Dr. Crane believed that appreciative words are the most powerful force for good on earth.

Everyone in life needs positive encouragement to help them grow, inspire and motivate them to succeed.

Take away: compliment 3 people every day for the next week and notice how your life improves.

You will also notice that the more you compliment, the better you will connect with others.

Everyone loves to talk about themselves. Asking the right questions of the people you encounter on a daily basis will deepen your relationship with them and will also help uncover a few "undercover customers".

No matter what your job, maintain a positive attitude, think taller, dress well, compliment someone every day, and journal what happens each day!

Training yourself to give honest compliments to others is a fabulous door opener for your success. By talking to people, you otherwise would not talk to, you will be expanding your circle and building new and stronger relationships.

Madeline Frank, Ph.D., DTM is an Amazon.com Best Selling Author, speaker, business owner, teacher, John Maxwell Team Member, concert artist, and parent. She helps businesses and organizations "Tune Up their Business". Her observations show you the blue prints necessary to improve and keep your business successful. Her latest book "Leadership On A Shoestring Budget" is available everywhere books are sold. If you need a speaker contact Madeline at: mfrankviola@gmail.com



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