13th floor of the Radisson Blu in Dubai. I’d arrived that morning from London and I was presenting the following morning. Being November in the UK, I was keen to experience the warmth and sunshine of the outdoor pool on the top floor.
And I wasn’t disappointed. Radiant sunshine and a lush view of the city.
I wandered over the edge of the poolside and chose a sunbed, resting my book and sun glasses on the table, I slowly lowered my British frame onto the bed and lay down to savour the sunshine.
Shortly a waiter arrived, who spoke perfect English and engaged me in a conversation.
“How was your flight?”
“Fine, thank you for asking”
“You’re a pilot with the British Airways party aren’t you?”
“No, I’m merely their passenger, what makes you think I’m a pilot?”
“Because of the way you walked across the poolside and settled down, you looked like a pilot.”
Now you can imagine my smile. Like a Cheshire cat was I, completely complimented. I purred.
On a sober note, we know about first impressions and your arrival into the client’s premises, walking over to your customer in the lobby is the first impression they see. Walk like James Bond I call it.
- Work out your route before you start walking.
- Walk slowly, no jerky movements, firm strides
- Hold your head high and lock on eye contact with your customer.
- Sway your arms by your sides, no touching of the body or face and don’t keep anything in front of you like a folder.
- If you have a case, hold it in your left hand because you shake with your right, sweaty palms and all that.
- If you’re walking through a crowd, use your arms as imaginary indicators to show your direction of travel, people will respond.
- Smile as you walk, smiling is engaging
And you’ll appear to be like James Bond and give a great first impression.
My new friend on the top floor pool. He probably uses the airline pilot line with all the men, if truth be told, but it sounded nice on that sublime afternoon.