Remember those old camera ads with a young Andre Agassi? The tagline was awesome…image is everything. The funny thing is, I have believed this for so long. This is something that I have thought a great deal about over the past few years. You hear people say things like “fake it until you make it.” Again, it comes back to image. When you have people trying to protray a certain image, you never quite know how to take someone, where you stand with that person, or if you can even trust them. The worst part of this is that when reallity does not match up with the “perceived image”, that opportunity is gone.
Today, while image and perception is still very important, image is nothing unless the image you portray is the image that is true to yourself. People are more skeptical than ever. If you want to build relationships fast, open up and let people know the real you. Some people may like it, others may not. But at least you know that they like the person you are, not the person you hope they think you are.