First Impressions and Human Behavior

1350 WordsJul 8, 20186 Pages
Imagine attending a college graduation ceremony and the man giving the keynote address strolls with hunched shoulders up to the podium. His hair has dreadlocks and stands on end in several places. His clothes look as if he quickly picked them out of the bargain bin of the local Goodwill Store. He is wearing a striped sports jacket, plaid golf pants and white, athletic socks with his bright, Bronco orange Crocs. Based solely on this information, will the audience listen intently and gain inspiration from the knowledge this man has to impart? Is it possible for his words to have the same impact on this particular audience as a speaker who marched confidently up to the podium, his head held high, his hair neatly combed, his suit…show more content…
Having a clear understanding of where one falls within Maslow’s “Hierarchy of Needs” helps him to understand why he may perceive others differently or why others react in a specific way towards him. The scenarios presented in First Impressions regarding John as an extrovert and then as an introvert exemplify the power of first impressions. The scenarios also help to illustrate the possible fallacies involved in making first impressions. In the scenario, which presents John as an extrovert, an individual’s first impression of John might be that he is confident, patient, approachable, and friendly. Although the scenario never uses any of these words to describe John, an observing individual might describe this as their first impression of John based on other information provided and by reflecting on their own perception of themselves. For instance, the description, “basking in the sun as he walked” (Clark, 2010) may project an air of confidence to an observer. The fact that John merely walked into the busy store and began chatting with an acquaintance, rather than pushing forward to the counter (Clark, 2010), might give the observer the impression that John is patient and friendly. John’s willingness to stop and talk with a girl he had only recently met (Clark, 2010) may confirm the impression that he is friendly but also give the sense that he is approachable in nature. In the scenario that presents John as an introvert, an
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