That was then... This is now...

First impressions stick and lead to expectations.

When they are good, we may assume positive intentions for everything a person does (halo effect), when they are not good, we assume the worst (horn effect).

Consider Sarah.  

When Sarah started, she didn’t know the database that well and asked a lot of questions that she could have answered on her own with a query.  

One day, as you are rushing out of the office to meet with a client, you realize you forgot to research a couple of key items about that client that you think might be captured in the database.  You see Sarah, but hesitate to ask her to check on it because you are stuck with the first impression – Sarah doesn’t understand how to use our database.  It makes you impatient and grumpy.  And it may undermine Sarah’s abilities.

The solution is to challenge your assumption and ask for her help.  If she helps you, re-write the story of Sarah in your head. 

Who needs a second chance at a first impression in your office?