Master First Impressions Through Your Physical Manner

In “The Power of Pretty”. Exec-Comm consultant Rachel Lamb discusses how appearance leads people to judge us as professionals. But appearance goes beyond what we look like and what we’re wearing – our physical manner is just as important.

According to Albert Mehrabian’s studies on nonverbal communication, others judge you only 7 percent of the time based on your words, 38 percent based on your tone of voice, and a whopping 55 percent based on your body language.

Want to improve your body language at your next meeting? Give these three tips a try.

Communicate Openness

Focus your eyes on the person who is speaking to show that you are involved, friendly and trustworthy. Stay present in the conversation by listening and responding as appropriate; occasionally nod to show you are engaged.

Project an Involved Posture

When seated, place both feet on the floor and sit with your spine straight. Sit on the front 2/3 of your chair and place your hands and forearms apart above the table. Use gestures to show size, movement and feelings. Avoid leaning back, slouching and crossing your arms or legs – all of these send a disengaged message.

Be Responsive and Supportive

Speak clearly and without hesitation in a conversational tone. Project interest and empathy through your facial expressions and match your expression to your words.

Give these three tips a try the next time you meet someone or are holding a meeting and let us know in the comments below how it goes!

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