July 8, 2009

Body Language for Leadership or Employment

You've probably heard the adage that says it takes four minutes to create a good impression. Well, what if your body language is sabotaging your efforts to look assertive and commanding in either your current role or future career? In my corporate training classes, many are taken by surprise when I share that body language accounts for up to 55% of the communication package. Most people believe that a positive impression is generated by using the "right words." Unfortunately, words only account for 7% of all communication.

So whether you are interested in improving your success within your current organization or impressing prospective employers, it pays to understand what your own body language is saying. One of the easiest, low effort ways to see what you are doing is to stand in front of a mirror and practice your interview questions or an upcoming presentation. Another way is to tape yourself and then play back the tape on mute, so as to concentrate solely on your body language. You never know what you might communicating.

For more perspective, take a look at Seven Common Body Language Mistakes from Forbes.com. Are you displaying any of these signs?

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