Management: Avoiding First Impressions

We’ve thought long and hard on how to master the first impression. Some of us still reign better than others. But while we’re stressing out over our showing our future employers our best appearance, we stay blind to what it’s like to be on the other side of the interview. First impressions influence the way we continue to view a person, but there are ways to push these initial thoughts aside.

(Source: Desired Haven)
  • Stay open-minded: According to best-selling management author, Dr. Stephen P. Robbins, “think of any early impression as a working hypothesis that you’re constantly testing for its accuracy.” Instead of immediately deciding on whether or not you feel a job candidate fits, allow yourself more time to come to a conclusion. By leaving your mind open, you will be able to assess more accurately without the bias of your first impression.
  • Do not judge a book by its cover: Appearances give us the unfortunate opportunity of judging a candidate off of their looks before hearing anything they have to say about their skills and traits. Though each candidate is preferred in business casual and presentable, their job qualifications need to have a major influence on your decision as a manager. When hiring, make sure to hear the interviewee out about their past experiences and qualifications along with their business appearance!
  • Ignore bias: Studies show that positive first impressions lead interviewers to continue the interview in an agreeable manner, and negative first impressions in a negative manner. In some cases, a manager may even find him or herself asking less-stressful questions to the candidates they immediately resonated with. By ignoring your own bias, you will be able to identify which candidates are best for the position without any outside factors interfering.

Source: The Truth About Managing People (3rd Edition), Stephen P. Robbins, Ph.D.

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