First Impressions are Forever: How to Put Your Business’s Best Foot Forward

First impressions are so sticky in our minds, that even if we have later experiences that conflict with those initial moments, our brains designate them as exceptions rather than change our opinion, according to the authors of a study published in 2016. For this reason, it is imperative that companies make the most of every opportunity to make a good first impression. This includes keeping company premises in good shape as well as cultivating a culture of professionalism among staff.

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Design Rules

Make the most of your office space with the goal of making visitors feel welcome. Help them to navigate the space with minimal difficulty. Even though a big design project might be beyond reach, it’s still possible to maximize the positive elements of your existing office space. Utilize natural light where possible. Signage should be clear and easy to read. Keep decor light and patterns subtle; things like upholstery and carpets don’t need to be perfect matches as long as they’re complementary in color and style. Arrange reception and waiting areas to allow ease of movement. Small additions like potted plants, accent lighting from desk or floor lamps, and artwork can go the extra mile in pulling the look together and providing a warm atmosphere.

Keep Your Space in Tip Top Shape

It’s not enough to have a well-arranged office space, though. Because it’s so hard to overcome negative first impressions, even small details like office cleaning matter. More than just washing windows, vacuuming carpets and keeping break rooms and restrooms clean, office cleaning involves maintaining neat and clean employee workspaces, too. Office hardware can get grimy through ordinary use. The dust and dirt that accumulates can contribute to hardware failure and data loss; but it can also be unsightly, too. Customers may find this a real turn-off. They may think that if you can’t take care of your own needs, how can you take care of theirs? Specialist office equipment cleaners can balance the need for cleanliness with the technological know-how to care for high-end copiers, printers, and related office machines properly.

People Power

Of course, the most important part of any organization is its people. No matter how good a product, service, or technology is, staff’s ability to make a good first impression goes a long way in overcoming nearly every other obstacle that might come up. A big part of that is acting and dressing in a professional manner, according to company guidelines. Whether the company culture calls for formal business attire, business casual or something even less strict, it’s still essential to look neat and clean when interacting with customers. In addition, staff’s willingness to go the extra mile in problem solving for the customer can’t be understated.

First impressions are formed in seconds, and can be cemented quickly. Businesses seeking to make a good impression on prospective and current customers should take care to maintain well-organized and clean offices. The attire and attitude of company employees are also critical in setting a positive tone; an organizational culture that emphasizes professionalism in dress and interpersonal communication can be a strong force in cultivating good impressions from clients.

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