We’re always told, “make a good first impression” or “you can’t make a second first impression”.
Yes, the first impression is important. It defines the relationship and sets the bar for all future encounter. In additions to the first impression, I’ve come to realize that the most recent impression can be just as important.
I recently organized a party and, in true party fashion , bought a keg from a local beer distributor. Getting the keg was great – it came on time and they even lugged it up to my 5th floor walk-up (drinking it was fun too). Getting them to pick up the keg, and return my deposit, was a different story. The distributor didn’t return my calls, missed two separate prearranged pick ups, and was generally disorganized. Needless to say, my opinion of this company was low. However, when they finally were able to pick up the keg, they did it the right way. They apologized for the issues, handed me a clean envelope, my name neatly inscribed on the outside, and crisp, brand new bills to return my security deposit.
Getting to the final outcome was a drag, but the experience of the final encounter was spot on. Despite the troubles, I can’t shake the feeling I had in that final encounter…that last impression really did matter.
So keep making strong first impressions, but remember, the last one matters too.