To get a job, a loan, or a good grade - it helps if you’re the first one of the day to be evaluated. That’s the takeaway of new research from psychologist Francesca Gino from Harvard Business School. She found that the person who’s interviewed first, tends to be rated more highly than candidates interviewed later in the day. Meaning, the first person sets the bar. So if the interviewer really likes the first person they talk to, then everyone who comes afterward will have to live up to – or surpass that impression.

Dr. Gino says it boils down to the fact that we all tend to start the day being fairly kind, and then we become harsher as the day goes on. And believe it or not, Gino says you’ll find this happening in almost every industry. Teachers who give out A’s on the first few term papers they grade may start to think, “I’m giving out too many A’s.” So, they’ll give the next student a lower grade, even if that student turned in A-level work. The same thing goes for loan officers. Gino says if the loan officer has approved a lot of loans early in the day, then they’ll be reluctant to approve your loan later in the day – even if you’re qualified – because they’ll think they’re being too nice.

Our expert says that mindset affects every decision we make in our daily lives – including what we buy, and whom we date. So, one way to use this Intel to your advantage is to schedule job interviews as early in the day as possible. Because if you’re the first to make a good impression on the interviewer, then every candidate who follows won’t stand a chance!

Lesson Expert

Ben Harris

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