Take a look at the video below. Ferdinand Foch, commander of French Forces in World War 1, visited America in 1921 and was welcomed by a group of Native Americans. Having been a speechwriter, I can tell you that events like these are very scripted. What is said is generally planned in advance and little is let to chance because everyone wants to make the “right impression.” I would have loved to have been a fly on the wall to listen to what the discussions about this meeting covered – “Yes, Marshal Foch, the last General the Sioux met was Custer….”
How much thought do you give to what you say to someone when you meet them? This past weekend I had a chance to listen to Glen Morshower speak and one of the topics he covered was what do you say to someone when you see them? He said that most people, when asked how they are doing, respond with “I’m fine.”
Track how the intonation works – … I’m … fine ….
Are you really? You start off on a high note and then… sag.
We have a friend at church that, when asked how he is, always answers “I’m Happy!”
Note how this runs – I’m Happy!
The intonation goes up at the end, giving a positive impression and pushing energy out, resulting in a better feeling for both him and the person he is greeting.
Most studies state that you have 10 seconds to make an impression on someone when you first meet them. This impression carries over into every other contact you have with them and will affect your long term dealings with them. So give some thought as to what your style of greeting will be.
Make it positive, deliver it with a smile, make eye contact, and stand straight. More important, make it positive.
How am *I* doing? I’m glad you asked. I’mmm Grreat!