Which is more important, first impressions or great last impressions? While both are significant, last impressions are more important because they tend to be what sticks with people the most. Our brains tend to remember the most recent events more vividly than those that occurred earlier. You’ve heard the saying: You’re only as good as your last performance!
In college I competed in gymnastics at the University of Northern Iowa. Here is the only surviving video I have of me I am at a conference with Iowa State University. Before competition, my coach would say, “Nail it!” Or “Stick the landing. In other words, ‘Don’t take a step.’ Of course the whole routine is important. Perfect form and pointed toes; great execution of the moves, even some with a high degree of difficulty. But most of all it’s about the finish. Sticking the landing. Unfortunately, even though the dismount was great, during the landing I took one step. And that’s was the last thing, the judges saw. The last impression.
What kind of final impression do you make, especially when you think you’re all done. I know one speaker who did a great job on stage only to ruin it by the way he talked with hotel staff after the event. So remember, your last impression could happen at the hotel restaurant, back at the office or in a follow up call with the client the next day. Final impressions will have an impact on how people remember you. So practice your finale and have a last impression.
Dr. Mark DeVolder is a Top Change Management & Transformation Expert, Award Winning Motivational Keynote Speaker Empowering Confidence through Change. Mark can teach you how to change, anticipate business trends and accelerate future-proof transformation. He’s done it before with industry leaders like Qatar Petroleum, PepsiCo, Royal Bank of Canada and Bristol-Myers Squibb.