I remember the very first meeting I had with a marketing agency. I got a call from a girl one day representing a digital marketing company who asked for an appointment with me. I was quite excited; well it was my first external meeting! So I said “Sure. Come to my office at 11 am tomorrow. Is that a good time for you?”. She responded in the affirmative and said she’d be there at 11 am.
Cut to the day of the appointment, 11 am and she’s not there yet. She and her partner showed up at 12:30 pm. By that time I had already made up my opinion about them and the service they were going to pitch and believe me, the outcome wasn’t going to go in their favour. I plan my whole day according to meetings and when people don’t maintain time it majorly upsets the rest of my day.
Now, I’ve got to be honest, I’m not the most punctual person myself. In fact, until recently I was always late wherever I went- Movies, concerts, dinners, submissions, etc. But I always ensured that I was on time when it came to work and business. Like in my previous job I was one of the few people who would do everything within deadline and attend meetings on time.
So now in the position of marketing manager I get tons of requests for appointments from various vendors and I expect them to show some basic etiquette such as being on time. The other day I had given a 12 noon appointment to one company for them to pitch their offer. They, of course, didn’t turn up on time; showed up half an hour late in fact. The very first thing I said to these people was “You were supposed to come at 12 noon” and they conveniently ignored it. As you can imagine, I had already judged them negatively. To add to that, during their pitch they got some pretty obvious detail wrong about my company, twice. My response? “You should have done your homework.” I mean duh! You were the one who approached me, I am your potential customer and you couldn’t take me seriously enough to show up on time and do your homework about my company? That itself says so much about your work style and the relationship I would have with your company if I decided to take you up on your offer. Jeez.
You know what they say about first impression being the last impression? Yeah, it applies to your punctuality too, not just your looks. And please, do your homework.