I’m pretty sure that from the first few minutes of meeting someone, consciously or unconsciously, you try to assess so many things about that person — and almost immediately, you have your mind made up about that person. This pretty much sums up the research which found that women have their judgement of a man just after few minutes of meeting.
What do you think people judge you on when they first meet you??
Harvard Business School professor Amy Cuddy has been studying first impressions alongside fellow psychologists Susan Fiske and Peter Glick for more than 15 years, and has discovered patterns in these interactions.
In her new book “Presence”, Cuddy reveals two questions that people try to answer when they meet a person: Can I trust this person? Can I respect this person?
Psychologists refer to these two questions as warmth and competence. In the professional/business context, competence is what matters most; however, in general, people tend to look at warmth and trustworthiness more, and Cuddy believes that competence is evaluated only after trust is established, making trust an important criteria in people’s evaluation of you.
Cuddy says MBA interns are often so concerned about coming across as smart and competent that it can lead them to skipping social events, not asking for help, and generally come off as unapproachable.
This attitude could easily make people trust you enough, thereby making it more difficult for your respect to be earned. “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 says.
“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.” She said.