Be Ready to Provide a Lasting Impression
In his book It’s a Jungle in There, Steven Shussler recounts the importance of making a memorable business card and keeping it handy for distribution at all times. “Each time I meet a new person, that individual could be a potential investor or someone who might provide assistance to me in some way” he says. Shussler goes on to say “as an entrepreneur, you might want to consider designing a special business card to capture the attention of your prospective investors.”
Of course, this is the era of smart phones and Facebook and we may feel inclined to not carry a business card with us for those reasons. But, even today, business cards are still a smart idea. It is possible that the person you meet doesn’t have a Facebook account, and if you swap text messages, your message could get easily lost among dozens of other text messages on the phone of the other person. Having an independent, stand alone means of providing information about yourself and your contact information is therefore a wise decision. Additionally, having your own business card shows that you are prepared for unexpected situations and may send a signal to your new acquaintance that you are a dependable person with foresight.
Dress Sharp, But Act Sharp, Too
The article by Bill Murphy Jr. from Forbes entitled 17 Simple Habits That Make You Look More Professional outlines a number of ways we can better present ourselves to those around us. One of the traits outlined in the article, and one that I feel is often missing from many of our conversations, is a professional type of candor. That is, being candid and truthful about a situation. It can be a great way of cutting through a conversation and offering a useful solution. And when we begin to offer useful solutions to people, that makes the conversation beneficial. And when a conversation is beneficial, we become beneficial and the value of a future relationship appears. Although this might not seem like “acting sharp” in the traditional sense (which I suppose is more aimed at “appearing smart” than actually offering useful ideas), I believe that it is an area that would greatly improve not only our own situation but the situations of those around us.
Murphy, Bill (2016). 17 Simple Habits That Make You Look More Professional INC.com. Retrieved from http://www.inc.com/bill-murphy-jr/17-simple-habits-that-make-you-look-more-professional.html
Shussler, Steven (2010). It’s a Jungle in There. Newyork, NY: Sterling Publishing