It’s well known that body language and nonverbal communication can be a major factor in your professional life, helping you to win interviews, promotions and business deals. The way you move your body, your facial expressions, tone of voice and gestures are all things that will make a lasting impression in the workplace. Once you’ve learnt how to master your body language, you can successfully use it to encourage meetings and interviews to come out in your favour.
- Make note of your posture
It’s generally considered that people make up their minds about others in the first four seconds they meet. In a professional atmosphere, this means a judgement could’ve been made about you before your interview or meeting even starts. Always ensure that you walk with good posture when going to meetings, in order to be seen as an equal. A brisk, purposeful walk and upright posture will convey the message that you’re confident and want to be there.
- Prepare your handshake
Handshakes are a valuable part of professional nonverbal communication. If you get it right, you may have the literal upper hand at the end of a meeting. The handshake is acknowledged almost universally worldwide, and is a great way to tell if someone is aiming to be dominant or aggressive in the meeting, or is likely to be passive. A lot of power-play can be experienced when shaking hands. What someone does with their left hand during a handshake is an excellent indicator of how they wish to be seen, with a left hand high on the arm an indicator of dominance.
- Touching your face
When in a meeting or interview, never touch your face. It’s a subconscious sign of mistrust, insincerity and deceit. Additionally, touching your lips is generally a sign of disagreement. People will automatically feel uneasy about you or distrust you if you touch your face, which isn’t conducive to a successful board meeting.
- The tone of your voice
Your tone of voice contributes greatly to the nonverbal communication in meetings. When you make a statement, directive or command, you will notice that your voice tends to go down in tone at the end of the sentence. If you want to convince someone to you way of thinking, therefore, it’s best to ensure the tone of your voice goes down at the end. If someone is trying to deceive you, their voice will tend to rise in pitch at the end, almost as if asking a question.
- Look for signs
As well as checking your own body language and nonverbal communication, looks at your colleague or client’s pens or other such possessions, or how they hold files and briefcases. This will give you a lot of information on them, so you can understand how they will approach meetings. Once you know this, you’ll be far more likely to sway the meeting in your favour.