Everyone likes to make a good first impression, but we don’t always succeed. Harvard Business School Professor Amy Cuddy has spent her entire career studying first impressions, so she’s figured out exactly what kind of judgments people are making when meeting someone for the first time.
In her new book, “Presence,” Cuddy writes that there are two questions we ask ourselves when we meet someone new: Can I trust this person? And Can I respect this person? The idea is that by asking those, people are trying to figure out how warm and competent someone is. She says that from an evolutionary perspective, we need to assess someone’s warmth to be able to know if they deserve our trust.
"If someone you're trying to influence doesn't trust you, you're not going to get very far; in fact, you might even elicit suspicion because you come across as manipulative," Cuddy explains. "A warm, trustworthy person who is also strong elicits admiration, but only after you've established trust does your strength become a gift rather than a threat."
So when you’re trying to make a positive first impression, there’s more to think about than body language, eye contact, and if you have anything stuck in your teeth. For better or worse, snap judgments are being made about how trustworthy we are in those first few moments.
Source: My Domaine