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Remember What You Represent

by | Professional Development

Whether you’re out on vacation, or just taking a couple days off, don’t get too relaxed. Although you might not be on a business call at the moment, keep in mind that you always represent your organization. You’re a living billboard for your brand! You never know when you’ll run into a customer, potential customer, or even someone who just recognizes you. Instead of risking your self-image and the image of your business because you failed to represent it properly, try these tips to keep your reputation spotless.

Keep Your Cool

A lone shopping cart in an empty parking lot.

Imagine you’re out running errands on a day off. This day is strictly reserved for getting housework and other chores completed. You’re on a tight schedule because you’ve got a lot of errands to run. When you finally get to the store, you end up with the shopping cart that has a broken wheel squeaking and going every direction but forward. Despite the malfunctioning cart, you carry on with your shopping and finally arrive at the checkout line and it’s so long. You’re doing your best to be patient, but you know you need to get home to put the groceries away then rush to a dentist’s appointment. 

In these situations, remind yourself that nobody is at fault, including yourself (sometimes people are rude to one another when really they’re just frustrated with themselves). No matter the predicament, there’s always a solution, but if you lose your cool, you lose a good impression and take the risk of harming your reputation. As a business owner, remember that you are your business, so your reputation is your business’ reputation.

Everyone Knows Someone

A child whispers a secret into the ear of another child, holding their hand up to hide their mouth.

When talking to someone new or a current acquaintance, keep your relationship with them in mind. Have you known them for a long time? Do you trust them? Are they a friend or someone you met through a friend? How you speak to them and what you talk about should depend greatly on how well you know them. Here are some things to keep in mind when talking to people whom you have yet to establish trust with:

  • Don’t vent or unload your problems onto them. 
  • Ask questions that allow you to get to know them. 
  • Don’t be the only person talking. 
  • Allow them to respond and ask questions. 
  • Listen. 
  • Don’t gossip. 
  • Ask questions that allow you to get to know them. 
  • Be open. 
  • Stay positive about everything

All of these tips are key to leaving a good first impression or having a memorable conversation with someone you haven’t gotten to know yet. Follow these tips and you’ll be sure to represent your business in a good light.

Professionalism Matters

A person dressed in a white shirt with a baby blue sport coat and teal pocket square is sitting next to a white bar countertop in a restaurant. Their phone and journal are on the counter next to them.

Everywhere you go, everything you do, and everyone you meet should be treated with professionalism. Here are 15 characteristics of professionals in case you’re not sure what that might look like. Going to dinner with some old friends? Don’t pretend to be someone you’re not or be someone you used to be. Instead, be proud of who you are now and who you’ve become. And remember, how you treat wait staff is highly representative of your personality and the kind of person you are. Meeting your teammates at an event that’s unrelated to work? Bring your business cards anyway and dress to impress. If you happen to connect with someone new that has customer or team member potential, hand them a card! This will open up the door for them to contact you if they feel inclined to do so.

The destination, activity, and the company you’re with shouldn’t change your level of professionalism. Hold yourself to a high standard and treat everyone with the utmost respect, kindness, and authenticity. Represent yourself professionally so that when your actions are recognized, and someone associates you with your business, that positive reputation carries over.

If you’re new to owning a business, you might still be transitioning to the ownership mentality. Check out our blog to help you along in the process.

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