Never Take for Granted the Power of the First Impression

Old sayings have been around a long time for a reason. I have been reminded lately of the one that says, “You never get a second chance to make a good first impression!”

In the consulting world where we interact with different clients on a regular basis, this is particularly critical. As a consultants we must:

  • Approach every meeting with our “A game”
  • Expect every new client we meet to assess our credibility
  • Adapt our own personal style to that which works best in our client’s environment

These things are FAR easier said than done, but essential never-the-less.


Sometimes consultants simply cannot recover from a less-than-stellar first impression with a client. When someone has an off day, or an awkward meeting and expectations are not met, some cultures are move forgiving than others.

For example:

  • A style or approach that works well in one culture or industry may not translate successfully to another environment
  • A technique which helps one executive excel may fall flat with another individual, even within the same company

What have you seen work well? What lessons have you learned from things not working out? I would love to hear your stories below.

Betsy Winkler is Partner at People Results. She can be reached on Twitter @BetsyWinkler1 or on email at Sign up to receive her and her colleagues’ blog at Current.