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Modern business can be very taxing. It can be fraught with stresses and financial burdens. It can be difficult to navigate your way to success. There are some skills that you will need to know to ensure you execute your role well.

5 Things That Every Business Professional Should Know

First Impressions Count

This might seem like a really basic point, but because it is so vital to the success of a business professional it bears labouring on. First impressions count. They are extremely important and are very hard to shake once they have been formed. Your associates will generally sum you up within the first 5 seconds of meeting you, most likely before you have spoken a single sentence. Research has shown that first impressions stay with us, so you must maximise your chances of making a really good impression. Dress for success. Make sure your personal appearance is tidy, well-groomed and that you look the part of a serious professional. Secondly, make sure your office or meeting room will also create a professional impression. If you work from home or in transit then use the services of someone like Servcorp Virtual Office, who can provide you with professional phone reception services as well as a good address and well-appointed meeting rooms and board rooms for use when you have an important meeting.

Your Presentation Needs to Wow Them

Every successful business professional needs to know how to nail a presentation. This is your bread and butter, the main tool in your arsenal to influence clients, executives and board members. It doesn’t matter how well you do your job, if you can’t create a killer presentation you are not maximising your potential. Always write out a summary of what you want to say so that your mind is focused on the point. Start with a powerful opening statement – remember the rule first impressions count. Take cues from your audience. Don’t be so stuck on your plan that you labour a point when everyone looks bored or move past a point too quickly when people are showing interest. Limit your presentation to 3 main points and use visual aids. Finish with a call to action.

Know Your Elevator Pitch

Your elevator pitch is your brand statement in 15 seconds. It is your chance to make a lasting impression. State what problem your products or services will fix. The clearer your pitch the better chance you have of attracting the right clients. Practice makes perfect: get in front of the mirror and pitch away. Also get feedback from a colleague.

Keep it Professional

Try to keep your emotions in check and not take work matters personally. If you start to feel emotional take a break in order to calm down. Don’t react. Loss of control is highly unprofessional and will affect your credibility as a serious professional

Know When to Shut Up

Say what needs to be said. Use short sound bites rather than rattling on. Long drawn out speeches will bore others and you will lose their attention. Keep them wanting more!