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Make A Powerful Impression

By Keith A. Shaw

Making a powerful impression is critical for setting the right tone - during an interview or even when you meet someone for the first time. And, in the far majority of cases, the first impression is the only impression you may make on someone else. So here are three key interpersonal skills that work for me time and time again.  

First, Make Eye Contact  

When you first meet someone, establish eye contact. Of course, in certain cultures it can be considered bad manners or distrustful to make eye contact when you meet for the first time. (Trust me…I learned this one straight away before I made my first trip to Japan many, many years ago). However, in the Western world, eye contact works to establish a bond between you and the other person and demonstrate that you are a person of confidence, rather than one of timidity.  

Second, Extend A Concentrated, Enthusiastic Hand  

Next, your first meeting succeeds, or fails, with a handshake. An effective, concentrated and enthusiastic handshake is more than how you squeeze the other person’s hand it’s actually an act that involves your entire body and mind.  

When you put your entire being into your handshake it shows your personality. When you shake hands in a listless way, it denotes timidity, and lack of force and personality. When your handshake is very weak and limp you are perceived as having little love in your nature, no passion or magnetism. The non-magnetic person shows that he is so, by his non-magnetic handshake.  

On the other hand (no pun intended), when two concentrated and developed souls shake hands, their handshake is never weak. There is a thrill (the enthusiasm) that goes through both when the two currents meet.  

This is why you should study, learn and develop the art of handshaking and other social affections. Experts at leading interpersonal communications and international media consulting firms fully agree with me on this critical element. Practice and practice some more.  

Third, Remember The Other Person’s Name – And Use It In Conversation  

Phenomenally successful people work constantly on their “people skills”. About six years ago, I had the pleasure of meeting Pat Croce, who over the years has been a successful entrepreneur, the President of the Philadelphia Sixers basketball franchise, author and television show host (Quite a “resume” I would say!). I first met Pat at a corporate event in the Philadelphia area, where he was a dynamic, featured speaker.  

Now, fast forward to one year later when, by coincidence, I see Pat walking through a crowd of people in the airport in Charlotte, North Carolina. My wife and I were about to enter a restaurant for a bite to eat as we waited for our flight home to Philadelphia. Not being a shy guy myself, I called out to him and he came over. After making eye contact, and of course sharing a concentrated, enthusiastic handshake, we proceeded to talk. Now, having only met Pat once, a year before, and have him remember my name was a “life lesson” that has stayed with me over the last five years.  

Using these simple, yet critical, interpersonal skills every day can take you far along your path to success. Practice them everyday, and soon you will be making a powerful impression, no matter where you are.  

Copyright 2007 by Keith A. Shaw and Mind Body Spirit, LLC. All rights reserved. No portion of this article may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means – electronic, mechanical, photocopying, audio or video recording or otherwise – without the written permission of the author and publisher.

Author’s Bio  

Keith A. Shaw, President of is an authority on motivation, self improvement, success, health and wellness. Keith is the author and creator of "The Power Of Thought", "The Power Of Serenity And Peace" and "The Power Of Concentration" Success Systems that have helped people achieve more than they ever dreamed possible. He also created "The Power Of Qigong" DVDs and books for improving health, wellness, energy, mind power and more.  

Keith is the Motivation Expert for and has also written articles that have been published in publications such as Modern Sage, Of Spirit, Self Growth and others.

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