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You really have 20 seconds!


A back alley. The front seat of your truck. A corner of your garage. Your kitchen counter, A fancy reception room or hotel lobby. A sunroom, chicken farm, TV room, airplane hanger, cornfield, Grand Central Station, a website, or the excavated mud puddle of a construction project


. . . How it looks and how it feels must be appropriate to your business or profession and represent the image you seek to project. You already know that, right? But do you remember to stay on top of it? And did you know that whatever your waiting area may be, it gets “scoped out” in 10 seconds!

YOU get scoped out in the next 10.

There you are: 20 seconds to make it or break it.


Much is said about the first ten seconds of a sales encounter with someone, or group, but little is made note of about the surroundings, environment, and setting of the place where those first interpersonal seconds actually come across, or have the stage be set.

The set and setting of the place people wait is critical to creating a mood of receptivity in the minds of those who wait for you –even if it[‘s for less than one minute. If the place is a mess, so are you, and so are the products and services and ideas you have to offer (in the mind and eyes of the beholder).

If everything is neat and clean and organized, so will what you have to offer be pre-judged to be that way.

It can’t be emphasized enough that regular ongoing (preferably daily, even hourly in some high-traffic areas) taking of inventory will make a big difference in how people assess you and your business . . . to the extent it can give you a positive and competitive edge in that first ten seconds of personal interaction.

Consider the last 5-6 business locations you visited (including doctors’ offices), and what do you come up with?


What, in your waiting area, needs tending toongoing maintenance? Start with torn and ragged old magazines and newspapers (trash them!), and dead bugs in overhead lighting units (especially bad if you’re a dentist, massage therapist, chiropractor, OB/GYN, or shrink!).

Dead leaves on plants? (Plastic plants are just as unacceptable; no matter how great they look, they communicate phoniness and lack of reality.) Dirty carpets? (How hard is that? It’s called a vacuum.) Dusty countertops, outdated calendar pages, inaccurate clock time?

Here’s the biggy: KILL YOUR TV and radio if:

A) They are staticky

B) They are tuned to mainstream media networks (it’s not about what you or your receptionist think people want to watch; it’s about the mood you want to create)

C) They are tuned to news channels or channels that offer regular news updates (blood and gore and tragedy are not particularly great graphics or content to be filling people’s heads with while they wait for you, or eat a meal, or are medically stressed)

Put the radios on elevator music. The more relaxed visitors are while they wait for you, the more receptive and less-stressed they’ll be when you step into the spotlight 

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Hal@Businessworks.US or 302.933.0116

 “The price of freedom is eternal vigilance!” [Thomas Jefferson]

Thanks for visiting. Go for your goals. God Bless You.

Make today a GREAT day for someone!

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