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Q: First Impressions ( Answered 5 out of 5 stars,   2 Comments )
Subject: First Impressions
Category: Relationships and Society > Relationships
Asked by: bunker-ga
List Price: $20.00
Posted: 10 Jan 2004 13:21 PST
Expires: 09 Feb 2004 13:21 PST
Question ID: 295121
How long does it take to make a first impression?  I would like any
and all statistics about how long it takes to make a first impression
-- I've heard 30 seconds but don't know if that's true. 
Over-the-phone impressions would be great to know, if possible, but
I'd like to know about personal first impressions.  Thank you.

Request for Question Clarification by tutuzdad-ga on 10 Jan 2004 13:48 PST
Questions by customers who ask for "any and all" information about a
subject generally don't get a great response from researchers. The
reason is because no one can be certain they have acquired ALL the
information available about any topic.

If you redefine your expectations you'll get much better results.


Clarification of Question by bunker-ga on 10 Jan 2004 15:20 PST
How long does it take to make a first impression?  I would like any
statistics you can give me about how long it takes to make a first impression
-- I've heard 30 seconds but don't know if that's true. 
I would also like to know how long it takes to make a first
over-the-phone impression, if that is possible, but if not, just how
long it takes to make a first impression -- before people make up
their minds about you -- would be helpful.
Thank you.
Subject: Re: First Impressions
Answered By: bobbie7-ga on 10 Jan 2004 18:25 PST
Rated:5 out of 5 stars
Hi Bunker!

My research for statistics about how long it takes to make a first
impression is as follows:

?Psychologists, writers and seminar leaders caution that you only have
seven to 17 seconds of interacting with strangers before they form an
opinion of you,? says David Saxby, president of Phoenix-based
Measure-X, a company that specializes in helping utilities improve
their customer service and sales. ?Worse yet, it takes them three
times as long to change their minds about you.?


According to University of Toledo psychology professor, Dr. Frank
Bernieri, first impressions are formed within 30 seconds and often
make the crucial difference in a job interview or a first date.

The Topeka Capital-Journal


?An article in the May 29, 2000, New Yorker reports on how social
psychologists have demonstrated that it takes only about 10 to 15
seconds of videotape for someone to form a lasting impression about
another person--in this case students ranking the performance of
various teachers. And their snap impressions consistently matched up
with those of other students who evaluated the same professors after
spending an entire semester in their classrooms.?


From a USA Today article:

"It takes only three to five seconds to make a first impression, but
it can take a whole career to undo it," says Dana May Casperson,
author of Power Etiquette: What You Don't Know Can Kill Your Career.

USA Today


Seven seconds
?That?s how long it takes for a person to form a first impression.
First impressions matter. Good first impressions build trust and
confidence in patients, visitors and staff -- whether it s on the
phone or at the front door or passing by them in the hallway.?

Johns Hopkins Medicine: Service Excellence


Bill Lampton Ph.D., in the article ?How to Make A Strong First
Impression?  says it takes between seven to seventeen  seconds.

?Psychologists, writers, and seminar leaders caution that we only have
from seven to seventeen seconds of interacting with strangers before
they form an opinion of us.?

Business Know-How


Within the first three seconds of a new encounter, you are evaluated?
even if it is just a glance.

Michelle Sterling: Global Image Group



The impressions we form of other people are constructed instantaneously.

?Human beings have the capacity to take in an enormous amount of
information when they first meet someone, and much of the information
is visual appearance information.?

?Human perceivers start to formulate impression within the first 30
seconds of meeting someone.?

?Early information colors interpretation of future information. In
other words, you don't loose your first impression, but build on it
during future encounters.?

Iowa State University: College of Family and Consumer Sciences


Seven seconds

?Whether you are going on a job interview or meeting with a client,
your first impression can literally make or break the deal. It usually
takes an average of just seven seconds for a person to make a judgment
about you based on your initial meeting.?

Self Improvement


What is a "first impression"? 

?Simply it is the first thoughts a person has toward you after seeing
you or listening to what you have to say. These are made during the
first five seconds and then the first few minutes of a conversation.?

The All I Need Website


?Within the first seven seconds we make our initial impression of an individual.?

?Within the first 60 seconds we form very strong opinions of others
that are very difficult to reverse.?

?I am truly amazed at how many people spend hours in company research
and rehearsal of interview questions, yet they fail to realize that
the impression they make on the interviewer in the first seven seconds
can make or break them in their quest for a job.?

Corporate Warriors


According to Patricia Thorp, president of the Coral Gables corporate
communications firm, people have 90 seconds to make a good first



?Studies have shown that most people form opinions about others within
the first 10 seconds of meeting them.?
Kings County Job Training Office


Thirty seconds ? that?s how long it takes a person to form a lifetime
opinion about you.

?When you enter a room, even though no one in the room knows you or
has seen you before, they will make many decisions about you based
solely on your appearance.?

Plus USA Women


?When we meet somebody for the first time, our first impression is
formed within 20 seconds maximum and that first impression is
incredibly difficult to change at a subconscious level. The reason I
say 20 seconds is simply because that is probably about the maximum
length of time for a client to get from the first moment of contact to
the point where they are starting to get a conscious 'feel' for the
way you are, most of the time.?


?A first impression is made within five seconds of meeting someone. We
make a judgment about them and how we will interact based on their
clothes, facial expressions, energy, confidence, personal power,
perceived authority, posture, personal grooming, and most of all, by
the way they treat us.

For five seconds, that?s a lot of information begin formulated.?

Cynthia Lett: Director and CEO of The Lett Group,


?You only have one chance to make a good first impression! A person
will size you up in a matter of 15 seconds as you walk into the room.?

Urban Programs Resource Network




?It takes 15 seconds to make a first impression, and the rest of your
life to undo it if it was a negative one.?

McCombs School of Business, University of Texas at Austin.


?Most data supports the fact that the first impression is made within
the first 30 to 60 seconds.?

Reed College


?Your appearance is one of the most important factors in the
interview. Recruiters form a first impression within the first 30
seconds and your appearance is important in forming a positive first

Brooklyn Campus Career Services


?Did you know that on the telephone a caller forms a first impression
of you and the company in about 30 seconds??

ESC Index


?It only takes about 30 seconds for a customer to form a first
impression about your business. When that first impression is made
over the phone, it is critical that the person on the other end of the
line projects a positive company image.?

The Roper Group, Inc


?The old saying "You only get one chance to make a first impression"
is especially true on the phone. How polite you are, how well you
speak, and how well you present yourself on the phone are

Read the complete article the following link:
Career World: Sept, 2002


?If your customer interaction is strictly over the telephone, 87
percent of their first impression is based on the tonality, pitch and
speed of your voice,? Saxby says. Saxby notes that the warmth and
friendliness conveyed in the first few seconds of conversation will
have a positive impact on the customer?s impression of your business.?

Other first impressions

?The appearance of the office is a crucial factor in how you are
perceived. If it takes 10 seconds to make a personal first impression,
it takes less than 5 seconds for your office to have already made a
statement about you.?



A resume also makes a first impression - in 10 to 20 seconds.

?Your resume will be quickly scanned, rather than read. 10 to 20
seconds is all the time you have to persuade a prospective employer to
read further. What this means is that the decision to interview a
candidate is usually based on an overall first impression of the
resume, a quick screening which so impresses the reader and convinces
them of the candidate's qualifications that an interview results.?

University of Central Arkansas: Career Services


?As much as I liked reviewing resumes, as a Human Resources Director,
I often had dozens to review at a time.  This meant that each one
would receive an initial screening of 30 seconds or less!  In that
time, the decision would be made as to whether the resume would go
into the "yes" pile (to schedule an interview), the "maybe" pile (for
further review), or the dreaded "no" pile (for a thanks-but-no-thanks
letter).  Thirty seconds is not much time to make a good impression,
is it??


Search Criteria: 
"First impression" seconds 
?Make a first impression?
?First impression? research
?First impression? study
?First impression? over the phone +seconds
?First impression? over the phone takes * seconds

I hope the information provided is helpful.

Best wishes,
bunker-ga rated this answer:5 out of 5 stars
Dear Bobbie7, These are wonderful answers, thank you so much!  You're
a fabulous researcher and I am very grateful for all the statistics. 
I'm so glad you answered this.  Thank you!

Subject: Re: First Impressions
From: donnaa5dcp-ga on 10 Jan 2004 13:58 PST
I have seen a TV programme "Without Predudice" in which they state
that the first 15 seconds you are evaluated. It is a programme in
which the "board" rid of contestants to win 50,000 one by one, and
the first is to go after a 15 second introduction. Its  enlightening
what the board says about the person based on the introduction.
I have learne dthrough life NEVER base a person on your first impression!
Subject: Re: First Impressions
From: hans51-ga on 03 Apr 2004 00:06 PST
The first impression starts at the VERY beginning - the very first
fraction of a second. The preparation FOR the first impression is the
time before - the time used to really clean up any prior mess that
might still be inside a mind or heart from previous painful
experiences, broken heart or broken previouis partnership / divorce.

if Both by that time are free in their heart - free of any struggle
against any other, if both by
that second are open FOR anything new, loving and even more open FOR
any potential partner - if both
during the first second and time thereafter can say in full and with a
true heart YES to each other, YES to love,
YES to making happy, giving love, fully absorbing love ..

then the first impression is love and shall always be remembered as such 
because then and all the time after only love flows - beyond and above
intellect, above judgment or prejudice -
just healing uniting love that joins and melts the two together.

If any NO or preoccupation or prejudice at the very first second -
then all that resistance may have to be dissolved
in love, with gifts, sweet-talk, and more efforts of indirect love to
overcome what ego has place between 2 potential lovers.

to make a "good" - a loving impression requires simply both involved
people to fully and entirely be free of past pain and
struggle in their heart and mind. to be ready to love.

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