"What do people say about you when you leave the room?"
“How are people experiencing you?”
***Fun Fact Alert*** My first job ever was at McDonald’s. ***Back to Back Fun Fact Alert*** I was actually trained in one of the McDonald’s basements. Yes, you heard that right, this McDonald’s had a basement. I managed to hold this job for an entire…..wait for it...4 days.
I know what you are thinking. He must have been fired. Either he was eating too many chicken nuggets on the job or he put his mouth directly under the soft serve machine and pulled the lever. Although, that would have made for an amazing story, the truth is that I got a call from the job I really wanted as a summer camp counselor and accepted it IMMEDIATELY.
The reason I share this story with you is because I recently was presented the question of, “how are people experiencing you?” Often we confuse how people experience us with our own perceptions. For example, I probably thought I was coming to work each of my four days at McDonald’s doing an amazing job and being a positive leader when in reality my manager and coworkers were experiencing a disengaged and average employee/coworker. The challenge this week is to ask yourself this question. “How are people experiencing you?” Think of your last meeting at work or your last interaction with a coworker. The more I intentionally focus on how people experience my behavior, the more likely I can create a positive experience for those around me.
I think most of us resort to auto-pilot or default behaviors if we don’t intentionally go into work with a focus on how we want others to experience us when there is a conflict or problem. Here are a few things I am working on to create positive experiences:
Next time you pull up to McDonald’s and they mess up your order, just think of me as a goofy high schooler and give grace.
“Within the first seven seconds of meeting, people will have a solid impression of who you are — and some research suggests a tenth of a second is all it takes to start determining traits like trustworthiness.”
Keys to a good blog:
According to Forbes research, “Within the first seven seconds of meeting, people will have a solid impression of who you are — and some research suggests a tenth of a second is all it takes to start determining traits like trustworthiness.”
When we brought our beautiful baby girl home for the first time we were nervous as to how the first 2 seconds let alone 7 seconds would go with our dog Max and her introduction. Max is a 93 lb. beast and is similar to a bull in a china shop. He is gentle , easily excitable, and looks like a small cow. We placed our daughter on the ground, Max approached with wonder and excitement, went face to face with our daughter, and then blew a sneeze in her face. (This is one of Max’s calling cards) We knew based on that first 7 seconds that everything was going to be okay. Max often chooses to ignore her these days and leaves the room immediately when she poops or is getting changed.
The idea that people will know who we are within a 7 second window may seem a little daunting. I don’t recommend sneezing in someones face to break the ice but I hope this is a reminder of the importance of our first impressions. Smile, be kind, and be the energy you want to attract when you meet new people on your journey.