The Two Things People Judge About You Within Seconds

Hey there!

I’m a big fan of Dr. Travis Bradberry – and of Amy Cuddy.

(If you haven’t seen their TED talks, or read their books, I think you’ll find them awesome.)

Dr. Bradberry recently noted the research that Ms. Cuddy undertook to observe what happens when people first meet you – that first impression.

He took it a bit further, and shared how you can put your best two feet forward.

(Click/tap ↑↑↑↑↑↑ that red YouTube button to subscribe to my channel. You’ll get notified when I release new videos.)

Hope this helps!


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Raw YouTube Captioning

hey there it’s David H Lawrence the 17th
and I am a huge fan of a couple of
people that just came onto my radar in
the last few years dr. Travis Bradbury
he wrote emotional intelligence I was
kind of given the credit of creating
that that phrase to add to IQ and social
cue emotional cue so emotional
intelligence and he he’s closely allied
with someone who if you haven’t seen her
TED talks on the Superman stands her
name is Amy Cuddy it’s great you got to
go find just Google Superman stance
Cuddy see you ddy watch the the TED talk
it’s one of the best TED talks ever she
actually did some research on what
happens when people meet each other for
the very first time and not only what
happens during that initial meeting but
actually what happens in the first point
six seconds that’s how quick someone
sizes you up that’s how quick someone
judges you that’s how quick someone
decides whether or not you’re worth
paying attention to and you know when
you audition you have to capture their
attention right away so she found that
there were two things that everybody
decides on everybody judges you on
within that first second one is can they
trust you can they trust you if they
can’t trust you they don’t want to talk
to you they’d immediately dismiss you
not interested can’t trust this person
don’t want to be hornswoggled goodbye
the second one is are you capable like
what’s your level of expertise is there
something about what you are that tells
me you can do things that you can do
what I’m expecting you to again in the
case of the audition you walk into the
room you’ve heard the phrase through the
door casting like the moment you walk in
you’re like they knew that you were the
one that would get the part or the
moment they heard you on your
pre-recorded you know mp3 audition for
voiceover that would
they knew it that was gonna be the one
they knew it they knew it they didn’t
even have to listen to your demo it
happens a lot I’ve heard casting
directors both on camera and on mic say
that very same thing so how do you do
that how do you do that and how do you
do it without coming off as fake right
so let’s talk about trust first the
first thing you want to do is a physical
thing that you can train yourself to do
if you’re being introduced don’t be the
first one to talk let the other person
be the first one to talk don’t stand
there and go okay talk but no but like
be expecting okay uh-huh and then let
them talk let them be the first to talk
do that small talk don’t jump right into
who you are and what you do you know
how’s your day going you know this is a
great party isn’t it you know or
wherever you are if you’re in the
audition space you know if somebody asks
you how it’s going you know I’ll be
honest with them and let them know and
be positive that’s the other thing use
an open stance so that you’re not like
closed off and talking to them you know
like as though you’re frightened they’re
gonna hurt you make the other person
your only focus so when somebody’s
talking to you don’t be looking over
their shoulder to see if there’s anybody
more interesting at the party and and
don’t check your phone oh please no
phones that actually ties into
capability you know what we’re talking
about there was trust those those little
things will actually make people more
likely to trust you now how do you show
them that you’re capable again no phones
don’t be looking at your phone don’t I
mean don’t ever do that when you first
meet somebody don’t be looking at your
phone put it away
I know it’s hard for some of you it’s
hard for especially people who’ve grown
up in the digital generation it’s like
no no I need my phone I got in my phone
I can I can meet somebody I can talk to
them and I can look at my phone at the
same time don’t tell me what to do okay
you can’t actively listen which is his
second tip about capability when you
actively listen when you really are
taking that focus that you you give them
when I was talking about trust when you
actively are thinking about what they’re
saying and your enrapt
you know until they prove there
not worth your time which sometimes
happens but just actively listen to what
they’re doing when you do that they hear
it they see it they can sense it and one
last thing if you know you’re going to
meet somebody for example I’m going to
go to dinner this week with a friend of
mine that works on a television show and
she’s currently doing a podcast with her
partner and she wants me to meet her
partner because her partner wants to
know more about podcast he wants to do
stuff for her business I know this so I
went and I googled her just to find out
what was about her and and you know
knowing little tiny things don’t show
off that you know but you can you can
have a much better frame of reference if
you have some idea of who it is that
you’re talking to and what it is that
they do and what it is that they need
now how do you apply all this to
so with recorded auditions with mp3 vo
auditions it’s kind of difficult because
you’re not looking at somebody you’re
not focusing on them but what you can do
is use your slate I’ve talked about this
before how important your slate is use
that slate to let them know that you’re
engaged that you’re talking to them that
your slate is not a throwaway thing that
you have to do that you’re friendly and
that you are capable right and show them
that you’re capable same thing when
you’re walking across the the threshold
to go into the audition space for
on-camera stuff or into a business
meeting or you’re being introduced on
stage do it with the audience you know
any of those times are a great
opportunity to build trust and show them
that you’re capable and the way to do
that is to really focus over all the
messages focus on what you’re doing not
on something else not on who’s more
interesting not on the next thing that
you’re gonna do after you meet this
person not on getting a drink not on
checking your phone you know if you do
that it’s going to be lovely people are
going to gravitate towards you and is
that something you’d like if you have
any other tips anything that you do when
you first meet people that you found
works for you I bet that if you think
about it it applies to either trust or
capability so let me know in the
comments below no matter where you’re
watching this I hope you’re watching it
on vo – go go comm you may be watching
it on YouTube or on any of the other
social networks but if you go to vo – go
go comm there’s all kinds of stuff there
that I can share with you that’ll make
your life even better and this is our
one a day video i’ve been doing a
challenge all year long new video every
day we’re nearly at 100 episodes and on
the 100th episode i am going to be doing
an ama and ask me anything i’ll be
gathering questions between now and that
episode so if you want to ask me a
question put it in the comments below or
send me an email david lawrence at and i’ll gather them all
together and i’ll try to answer as many
as i can if it if it’s too many i’ll do
another episode with that but ask me
anything about acting about voiceover
about you know internet marketing about
promotion about success about
productivity radio and television you
know technology anything you like
anything I can I can help you an AMA is
coming up and even if you want to ask me
a question about how we do these videos
how I’m doing these videos every day I’d
be thrilled if that was the case alright
so if you want to subscribe to my
youtube channel if my heads there click
on it if not find a subscribe button
somewhere and if you want to see the
latest episode I’ve done go ahead and
click on that frame and YouTube will
play it for you I’m David H Lawrence
xvii I really appreciate you watching
these videos and I’ll talk to you

13 Responses to The Two Things People Judge About You Within Seconds

  1. Veleka March 25, 2019 at 10:52 pm #

    David, I train my students to walk into a live audition and say “hi” and then stop and smile and wait for direction. What’s your take on that approach?

  2. David H. Lawrence XVII March 26, 2019 at 12:05 am #

    What’s your strategy with that? I’d love to know your thoughts.

    • Veleka March 26, 2019 at 4:44 pm #

      Was that question about strategy for me, David?

  3. Trevor March 26, 2019 at 9:12 am #

    I’ve heard it said that the most valuable skill employers and clients look, whether they know it or not, is the ability for you to get along well with a wide variety of personalities.

    This stuff is so massively important. Other small things I’ve found have made a big difference for me: firm handshake in the appropriate circumstances (but no firmer than theirs) and eye contact (please, at the same time as the handshake), plus a genuine smile.

  4. Judy Blackshear March 26, 2019 at 11:39 am #

    I love your daily videos. I especially love this one because those two things – projecting trustworthiness and competence – are especially difficult for my socially awkward self. From listening to them for about three months, I feel I have gotten to know you a little. So I think I have enough background now to be confident you will want to know that Amy Cuddy, PhD is “Doctor” just as Travis Bradberry, PhD is.

    Looking forward to the rest of the videos this year! :)

  5. Stuart Gauffi March 26, 2019 at 11:49 am #

    I watched Amy Cuddy’s TED talk. I can relate on a personal level.

    Many years ago, I was a young enlisted guy in the Air Force. One of the things we had to do was prepare for, and sit before, a quarterly review board. This is a board of 5 senior enlisted personnel–usually all Chief Master Sergeants–who would interview and evaluate each candidate, and make recommendations for Airman of the Quarter awards. Unit winners went on to compete at the base level, and quarterly winners for the annual Airman of the Year award. One airman was taught by a colleague of mine (his supervisor) to wait outside the board room in the parade rest position. If you’re not familiar with it, imagine the Superman/Wonder Woman pose, but with the hands placed in the small of the back. Other candidates would typically wait sitting in the chairs provided outside the board room. That airman won his unit’s AOQ award 4 times, base AOQ 3 times, and AOY twice–at a major command headquarters base with tens of thousands of personnel.

    Seems like there might be something to this theory.

  6. Chris Buckner March 26, 2019 at 12:39 pm #

    I’m not sure exactly what I do when meeting someone for the first time, except I’m pretty sure I always give a big smile. I think “not speaking first” might be difficult as I probably say hello as I offer my hand. I’ll try and observe my behavior the next time I meet someone, and also observe the behavior of others if they are doing the same. This is an interesting topic. Thanks for the video David.

  7. Cindy Piller March 26, 2019 at 12:46 pm #

    Great stuff!

  8. Jeff March 26, 2019 at 1:35 pm #

    I am fascinated by what you said about making your voiceover slate more personable. Could you explain and give one or two examples of what you mean, please?



  9. Veleka March 26, 2019 at 4:41 pm #

    Cuddy and Bradberry stole my stuff. I started teaching my students the Superman stand in 2000. As for the rest of it, ask any of my students about The Handshake. Been teaching that since 1992. ☹

  10. Patricia Napolitano March 26, 2019 at 8:27 pm #

    Great suggestions, especially about slates and not making them “throwaway”. Probably not a good idea to make any thing a “throwaway”, but to be focused instead, be present. We may not think certain stuff is important but it can be, like your introduction or slate.

  11. Sheila March 28, 2019 at 8:44 am #

    Loved this topic. Fabulous!

  12. Alexandra Harrington March 29, 2019 at 7:18 pm #

    One really important and easy thing that most people forget to do when being introduced to someone is remembering their name, and using it! How often do we learn someone’s name and immediately forget it! Even just saying bye, “Ali” really makes a good impression for me when I first meet someone, and I try to do the same!

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