It’s no secret that first impressions are important. Research has shown that people judge others within the first few seconds of meeting them. And these judgments can have a significant impact on our lives, from our career opportunities to our relationships.
What many people don’t realize, however, is that the way we look plays a role in how others perceive us. In other words, our appearance affects client relations.
In this article, we’ll explore how your appearance can influence the way clients interact with you. We’ll also discuss some tips for improvements that will help you build positive relationships with your clients.
Choose Attire Accordingly
The way you dress is important because it reflects your personality and values and because the clothes you wear can change how clients perceive you.
For example, research has shown that clients are more likely to trust their lawyers if they dress in formal business attire during their initial consultation. They expect them to be knowledgeable about legal matters, and they believe they are more likely to be trustworthy if they conform to their idea of a professional.
In that case, dressing up nicely when meeting clients is a good idea. But try to keep your appearance as natural as possible for the remainder of your interactions with them. Your clients might perceive you as more competent and professional if they see that you’re comfortable enough with yourself to dress down at times, rather than always wearing an expensive suit.
Practice Personal Hygiene
Not only do clients make judgments about you based on how you dress, but they also judge based on your hygiene. People associate good hygiene with honesty and respect for others. So by maintaining good personal grooming habits (e.g., brushing teeth regularly, washing hands often), you can help clients form more favorable opinions of you.
Another aspect of good personal hygiene that impacts client relations is your scent. According to research, investors who interact with entrepreneurs wearing perfumes perceived them as more competent and trustworthy than those who weren’t wearing any smell at all. So it might be a good idea to wear cologne or perfume during formal business meetings.
But be aware that it could have the opposite effect if you wear too much. A few squirts should suffice to make a good impression without being overpowering.
Improve Your Posture
Just as attire and hygiene affect clients’ opinions of you, so does your posture. According to research, people tend to view physically tall and lean as more persuasive. They also view them as more competent than those who seem less fit.
So next time you meet with clients, try not to hunch over or cross your legs while they’re talking. Keep good posture, which will give the impression that you are confident in yourself and what you’re saying.
Develop Strong Eye Contact
One key aspect of body language is eye contact. If you don’t make appropriate eye contact, clients might question your ability to listen or be trustworthy. On the other hand, making strong eye contact with clients indicates that you are actively listening and engaged in the conversation.
Therefore, it’s important to improve your eye contact with clients. Practice this aspect of body language in social interactions and business meetings to become more natural for you.
As a general tip, try not to maintain too much or too little eye contact. Instead, aim for direct and steady eye contact during formal interactions and casual conversations seventy-five percent of the time.
Become Mindful of Your Speech Habits
We’ve all heard that actions speak louder than words when you interact with clients, especially if your appearance and body language don’t convey the message you want to send, so it could be a good idea to combine confident speech patterns with confident appearance and posture.
If you feel your speech needs more improvement, take the time to fix it by seeking professional support. Many cases of bad speech habits happen due to underlying oral concerns. Orthodontists often suggest wearing oral appliances to retrain the way you speak. These appliances help improve speech through heightened muscle control and better jaw alignment, which allows you to speak more clearly.
An Invisalign might be necessary if the issue comes from your teeth or bite. Several other oral appliances can help you, depending on the subject. The dentist will help you figure out which instruments would benefit your specific case and client relations the best.
So there you have it — ways to improve your client relations based on your appearance and speech habits. By following the tips mentioned in this article, you can make a good impression on clients and create a more positive relationship.