You have heard this before “You never get a second chance to make a first impression”. That first impression starts with an introduction either by your host, yourself or a friend. The first impression or introduction is what will get any following conversation off on a high note or not.
You may be making new friends, a new business acquaintance or meeting someone that could potentially have a big impact on your future. You never know the potential opportunities that someone’s experience, support or friendship can provide that started with the initial introduction. It’s only later, maybe weeks, months or even years that the person on the other side of the introduction turns out to be so valuable. Mastering the art of an introduction is one of the unspoken skills that can yield incredible results. Everyone should and needs to make as many friends in life as possible, this is making connections, networking and contributing to society.
Keep it simple, learn a routine and use it each time so it becomes natural. This will also allow you to focus on the key points so you can better remember the details. How many times have you been introduced to someone and a minute later not sure of their name? You heard their name, but it just didn’t stick in your memory. To help you remember names and details about someone, associate these details with something you already know. Part of making a good impression is being able to remember a few details about the other person; like their name, occupation, where they are from and their friends.
How to Introduce Yourself and Others
Extroverts have a much easier time communicating with others then the introvert, a little practice goes a long ways to making it all equal out. The primary key to any conversation, especially an introduction, is being able to
listen. Many extroverts can articulate well but listen badly. Remember you are getting some details about another person so they can be used later when needed. Why else be part of an introduction?
Here are some tips that should be used if you are introducing yourself or someone else is doing the introductions. It does not matter who starts the introduction, but it is important for you to make the good first impression. Many times you may have to “take over” or “finish” the introduction just to make sure all goes well.
Smile, look friendly – a nice smile is the one of the first things another person will remember about you. It says “I am glad to meet you” more than any words. Make sure your teeth are clean and your breath smells good. It is recommended that you make a restroom break immediately after eating at any dinner party to make sure something is not struck in your teeth. Taking small bites helps keep your front teeth clean and able to speak quicker without a mouthful if needed.
Look directly at the other person – eye contact shows you are paying attention and this introduction is important to you.
Handshake – a firm but not too strong handshake shows you are a person worth some attention and adds some emphasis to your smile. At time you may need a napkin for a sweaty hand.
Body Language – stand up straight and use good posture. Don’t keep your arms folded but look relaxed and confident. It is always best to stand and face directly towards the other person.
Your name – if you are introducing yourself, say your first and last name clearly and not too fast. Always repeat their first name “it’s a pleasure to meet you Jenna”, this will help you remember their name. This also makes sure you heard their name correctly.
Focus – keep your focus on the person you are meeting to help make them feel comfortable with the introduction.
Listen – to best grasp the details of the other person, listen carefully and remember their name, their interests, their profession and their friends. Some people believe that to appear interesting, they need to talk more. More important is the ability to listen and show interest in others. Don’t be the person who dominates the conversation and seems self-centered.
Introduce others – when you introduce others, don’t just mention their name. Make a point to mention something about each person you are introducing like, “Jon, this is Joe Adams who recently ran the local marathon. Joe this is Jon Stevens my neighbor and long time friend. Jon also loves to run.” Give each of the other people something to grasp or hang onto about the other.
Ask – to help you remember some interesting points about the other person, ask a question concerning what you heard. If you recognize their last name, you may ask “Are you related to ____”?
Be Positive – keep the introduction and any following conversation positive; avoid any chance for an argument.
The Host – the host should try to meet each guest at the door as they arrive and introduce them to others at the party as needed. This is a good time to explain the little things such as coat room, restroom and where the drinks are located. If time allows this is also the best time to introduce the new party to others they may not know.
Conclusion – every once in a while you meet a person that seems to have great personality. A person that other people want to associate with, a person that makes you feel better about yourself, a person that is noticed when they enter a room. You can be that person if you follow these tips and show a genuine interest in other people.This all starts with the Initial Introduction and the First Impression.