Barbara Corcoran, one of the stars of ABC's Shark Tank business reality show, says if you want to impress her, you have very little time.
"I very rarely change my opinion after that initial five or six seconds," the billion-dollar real estate icon tells Businessweek. "You sit down, you exchange cordialities, and usually the person doing the interview has decided if they like you. They might not have decided if they’re going to hire you yet, but they’ve decided if they like you."
Corcoran tells business etiquette expert Richie Frieman that there is no warm-up period when meeting a potential employer or business contact; you must be at your best the second you lay eyes on the other person.
"So you have to be very polished and think through how you come across," she notes. "The biggest impression you can never take back is those first few seconds.”
Adds Frieman: "Be on time; call everyone by Mr. or Ms., and display respect and humility. Remember, it’s key to win the interviewer over with your soft skills."
Click below for more advice from Frieman on avoiding common workplace faux pas.