Achieve Your Career Goals: Start With A Smile!

Did you know that when it comes to succeeding in the corporate world, your smile can have a big impact? Multiple studies have found that having a healthy, attractive smile can help land you a job, close a sale, negotiate a better salary, and even motivate others to improve their performance. For better or worse, a smile that stands out is often a critical component to professional success. That kind of smile goes beyond the surface, however. Straight teeth, overall oral health, and a bite that functions properly all play a role in giving you a grin that gets you noticed. But what if you’re struggling with crowded or crooked teeth, misalignment, or other orthodontic issues?

Here at Saddle Creek Orthodontics, we believe in the potential of every patient, and want to help you meet any goal you set for yourself. If you’re looking for a way to kickstart your career, our treatment options are the perfect place to start! Let’s take a look at why smiles matter when it comes to success, and how we can play a part in getting you there.

The power of positivity

“Smile and the world smiles with you.” This old saying has lasted for so many years because it’s based on the fact that smiling is contagious! Humans often unconsciously mimic facial expressions, which can then trigger a similar emotional state. This allows us to understand the person we’re communicating with and respond appropriately. That’s why we tend to smile back when someone smiles at us, and why doing so can briefly boost our mood.

As it turns out, a great smile may also signal to employers that you could be a positive influence on the job. A Yale University professor by the name of Sigal Barsade, Ph.D. conducted a study where volunteers were divided into small groups and assigned specific tasks. One of the team members was secretly instructed to act upbeat and positively, and when that person entered the room with a smile on their face, the mood was picked up by the rest of the group almost instantly! Not only that, but each individual’s performance improved and the group was more likely to achieve its goal.

Scientists at the University of Kansas had a similar study. Subjects were given stressful tasks, and then some participants were asked to smile during these tasks, while others were told to maintain a straight face. The participants’ heart rates were measured, and their self-reported stress levels were noted as they performed the tasks. The subjects who were smiling had lower heart rates, and their body’s response to stress was reduced. They also reported feeling less stressed and more positive overall than those who did not smile. There’s clearly power in positivity and in a smile! This is attractive to employers, and can also make you popular with your coworkers.

The Halo Effect

The halo effect is a term that was coined by researcher Edward Thorndike in 1920 to describe a particular phenomenon where we attribute many positive qualities to a person if we see one positive quality. This is basically a shortcut our brains take that allows us to extrapolate information about a person based on our perception of them. It may not be particularly fair, but it’s in our nature, and goes to show you just how important first impressions can be!

One trait that’s been proven to elicit the halo effect is a bright, attractive smile. If you meet someone and they have a beautiful smile that you notice right away, you may find yourself subconsciously assuming that they’re also smart, witty, successful, hardworking, and a number of other qualities you admire. If you’re trying to get your foot in the door, angling for a promotion, or trying to close a deal, your smile could set off a halo effect that will serve you well.

Dr. Kyle working on a patient's teethYour smile sets the tone

A genuine smile helps to put others at ease, makes you appear friendlier, and can even give you an extra boost of confidence. This is often at its most apparent when you meet strangers for the first time. Consider a job interview – no matter how impressive your credentials are, if you come across as stiff, unfriendly, and don’t make a connection with the interviewer, it could hurt your chances of getting the position or promotion you desire. That’s because companies aren’t just looking for qualified candidates, they’re looking for someone who is a good fit for their team, who will add to a positive work environment, and who can easily build a rapport with coworkers, customers, and clients.

Take a chance on your smile

When you don’t feel confident, it’s hard to leave your comfort zone and take any risks.  But being successful often involves doing exactly that! When you’re happy with your appearance, you feel better about yourself, and loving your smile can be a powerful boost to your self-confidence. Multiple surveys and studies have shown this to be true. In fact, Invisalign worked with Harris Poll to conduct a survey on the impact of straight teeth and found that 78% of adults who underwent orthodontic treatment said a straighter, healthier smile gave them the confidence to do something they never would have done before!

There was also a study published in the American Journal of Orthodontics & Dentofacial Orthopedics which took photos of ten individuals in need of orthodontic treatment and digitally altered them to give them the ideal smile. Groups of subjects where then shown either the unaltered or altered photos. The people showing corrected smiles were consistently evaluated as more likely to be hired for a job than the photos of the same people with their uncorrected smiles. While it’s unfortunate that appearance plays such an important role in how we’re perceived and our overall hireability, orthodontic treatment can help you use that to your advantage by giving you a beautifully aligned smile you’ll want to share with the world! And that’s where we come in.

Patients at the Saddle Creek Orthodontics front deskHow we can help you achieve a smile you’ll want to show off

Here at Saddle Creek Orthodontics, we believe patients of all ages deserve a healthy smile that looks and feels great. We offer a variety of orthodontic treatments from traditional metal braces to more subtle options, such as clear braces and Invisalign aligners. Healthy teeth can be moved at any age, and many orthodontic problems can be corrected just as easily for adults as they are for children and teens. Thanks to innovative technology, most treatment options available today are smaller, sleeker, and more comfortable than ever before. Some are almost invisible!

Straightening your teeth and correcting orthodontic issues will improve your oral health and your overall health, too, but don’t underestimate the power of loving how your smile looks! Smiling is tied to better moods, greater positivity, being able to connect with others more easily, and a reduction in stress levels. Not only that, but as we’ve outlined above, a beautiful smile can increase your confidence, help you make an outstanding first impression, and may even give you the edge you need to successfully meet the career goals you’ve set for yourself! If you are interested in learning more about how your smile can help you get ahead, we encourage you to contact us to schedule a FREE consultation with Dr. Fagala. This is the perfect time to take the first step towards the success you desire – and deserve!