I’m sure you’ve been in a meeting and you couldn’t help but notice somebody seemingly hell-bent on spending the entire time looking out of the window, with their body faced away from the speaker, and no doubt having their arms crossed!
That may be a bit exaggerated but I’m sure you get the sentiment.
So, let’s talk about 5 golden body language tips to avoid when you’re in a meeting with one or more people if you want to gain agreement.
It’s smart to be aware that even small but negative body language signals can damage your prospects in an important conversation.
Frankly, it doesn’t matter what you might believe you are thinking, positive or otherwise, you could still be sending negative body language signals.
There’s no point articulating a point of view in the most elegant manner if your body language is undermining you!
Tip 1 Sit up straight
Avoid leaning back and do not slump in your chair.
Don’t look lazy.
Keep in mind that leaning forward too much can be seen as aggressive.
Lean forward to show you are actively listening, but be discrete.
And don’t fidget!
Tip 2 Make eye contact
Always hold eye contact slightly longer than is practically needed.
And make sure you do this to everyone in the room.
Don’t stare but make sure you do this – be inclusive and show you are listening.
Oh, and stop looking at your phone!
Tip 3 Nod your head but not too often!
It’s smart to nod your head occasionally to show agreement.
BUT don’t overdo do this as it will be too noticeable, and you will appear as a try-hard.
Tip 4 Stay physically open
Never cross your arms!
Always keep your arms relaxed and at your sides.
This suggests you are open to the conversation.
Don’t have your hands in your pockets.
Tip 5 The Golden Rule
Physically Match and Mirror the person you are speaking to.
Don’t make it too obvious and, above all, make sure you do this outside of a person’s awareness. Posture, gestures, tone, pace, matching language, and so on should be used.
Remember you have many faces, many skills, many talents, and some wonderful attributes.
You also have choice.
Why not choose to be a master of the way you present yourself and avoid these body language no-nos.
This way you can confidently communicate far more effectively!