When you meet someone important for the first time, you want to make a good impression, but sending the right message off the bat isn’t always easy. Luckily, there are a few common mistakes people make that are completely avoidable. All you have to do is be aware of them and know how to avoid them.

Here are 3 usual communication mistakes we are all prone to make when trying to make a first impression and how you can avoid them.

Talking About Yourself Too Much

Put yourself in these shoes. You shake hands with someone only to have them go on a 5-minute monologue of their career goals, skills, hopes and accomplishments. This, as you know, can be annoying.

It is, however, natural at times to begin talking about yourself right away. When we meet someone important you feel pressured to begin selling yourself immediately.

Although it is necessary to speak about yourself, you still want to make sure it is a conversation. Make it a back and forth and ask questions about them too. Over the course of the chat you will naturally talk about yourself enough to give them a clear picture of who you are.

Not Talking About Yourself Enough

At the opposite end of the spectrum, you don’t want the other person carrying the entire conversation.When the other person asks you questions, avoid short answers that lead to nothing. This makes it hard for the conversation to continue rolling.

The key in finding the correct amount to speak about yourself is seeking out a balance. Talk about yourself for a bit, then find the right time to ask them a question to balance it out. It may take some time and practice, but over time you will find yourself having equal and productive conversations.

Complaining Too Much

At times a complaint can be a natural conversation starter. Whether it be the food or weather, there are always things we can complain about.

However, being a person who jumps immediately to the negatives of a situation is probably not who you are trying to be, and you definitely don’t want this person to think that of you. This is also not the best foot to start a relationship off on.

Try to keep things positive. When your conversation starts on the right foot, it will naturally get better and be more upbeat from there.

As a professional, you are well aware first impressions matter, but sending the right message right away isn’t always easy. Steer clear of these 3 mistakes and you will be on your way to making lasting impressions!