When it comes to business, most of us are aware of the part that our personal appearance and presence will play in people’s opinions of us. Whether we like it or not, how we portray ourself gives off a strong first impression and can end up making or breaking whether a potential client decides to work with us.
Imagine this: you’re looking to sell and set up a time to meet with an agent who wants to list your home. You’re waiting at a local coffee shop and arrived early to make sure you didn’t keep them waiting. Five minutes go by... then ten. Finally, the listing agent arrives seemingly flustered and looking disheveled. They sit down and rustle through papers as they attempt to get organized. They don’t seem prepared and act distracted throughout the entire meeting. Now, when it comes down to it, do you feel confident they’ll be the best choice in getting your home sold? Probably not.
Many of us can think of positive and negative examples when it comes to personal appearance and presence. For me, I think of my grandpa. My grandpa was never wealthy, maybe not even considered middle class, but he always looked like a million bucks. His clothes were off the sale rack, but they were clean and ironed and always looked well put together. When he walked in a room, his presence was felt because of his dignified stature and warm hearted demeanor. In conversation, his eye contact and ability to listen well would make you feel as though you were the only person in the room. What a difference these aspects can make!
Here are just a few key things you’ll want to focus on to ensure your personal appearance and presence reflect your business.
1. Clothing- As mentioned above, you don’t have to be up on all the latest trends or have the name brand labels to appear put together. Work with what you have to show that you care how you present yourself to others. No matter if your community accepts suits or shorts as professional attire; you’ll want to make sure your clothes fit well, are clean, ironed if needed, and your shoes are free from dirt or from looking too worn. You get the idea!
2. Body Language- While correct posture may seem old fashioned, how you carry yourself can be very telling! Standing tall can give an image of confidence and can gain trust, while slumped shoulders or crossed arms can give off the impression of insecurity.
3. Eye Contact- Eye contact is important in showing confidence, gaining trust and showing that you truly care about the person! Constantly shifting your eyes can make it seem that you’re distracted, and can make people feel rushed or that you’d rather be somewhere else. It may take practice to maintain eye contact as it may be uncomfortable at first, but it can make a huge difference!
4. Smiling- In a rushed or competitive business atmosphere, it can be easy to forget to smile. While you want to appear serious about your work and that you can get the job done; smiling can go a long way in creating relationships! Your clients want to feel you enjoy your job and that you’re approachable.
5. Grammar- While most of us have a solid working knowledge of the English language, you want to be as professional as possible in how you communicate with your clients. Whether you’re talking with them, writing an email or blog post; good grammar is still an important part of your overall presence. And, although you want to make your clients feel comfortable with you; make sure you maintain professionalism in the things you say, your humor and how you talk about others.
While these tips may just be a review for you; I hope it’s a good reminder in the importance of how we present ourselves in business. It is a direct reflection of the work that we do!
As Real Estate Virtual Assistants, we may not see our clients, but we still have the opportunity to communicate with them through phone calls and email, so we strive to show how much we care, as well as show our professionalism in these ways!
Have a tip to share? We’d love to hear how you portray your business through you personal appearance and presence!
Blogging & Copywriting Specialist