I trust that all of you have had the joy of playing the First Impressions game… Now that you know your roommate’s habits inside and out, can you even recall the day you decided who got the bottom bunk or the desk closest to the window? After sitting through endless lectures and stressful exams with the same familiar faces, do you remember when you divvied up responsibilities for the first dreaded group project? As you prepare for your last semester and enjoy the spoils of senior year, do you ever think back to freshman orientation and the splash that you made when you arrived on campus? I have always enjoyed looking back at those moments with the perspective that I have now – it can be amazing to see how relationships evolve.
As a recruiter, I spend a lot of time obsessing about first impressions. How is Protiviti perceived by potential candidates in the market? How do we reinforce a positive message throughout the recruiting process? As candidates, you have a similar challenge to make the right connections and build a strong rapport with various employers. From start to finish, this can be a lengthy dance, with many interactions that help you communicate your merit and understand the opportunity. In a way, though, I don’t think any moment is as influential as that initial introduction. The most important individual can be the first person to shake your hand. That one moment should set the tone for the rest of your experience.
As you consider employment opportunities, play the First Impressions game. Ideally, the upbeat message that came across when you were first introduced has stood the test of time… And hopefully this is something that your roommate can also say!