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by Randall CraigFiled in: Blog, Communication, Make It Happen TipsheetTagged as:

Have you ever had a meeting with your colleagues, or perhaps a client or prospect, and it didn’t go as well as you thought it would? If so, you’re not alone. While we all like to focus on the content of what we say, one thing will often get in the way: our body language.

Most people recognize the power of their body language. If you are not aware of how yours “speaks” to others around you, it shouldn’t be a surprise if your message isn’t resonating. And with increasing diversity in many workplaces, people will rely more on body language to augment the meaning of an uncertain word.

The most important thing is to ensure that your words and your body language are congruent. Defining your message is first, but after that, work on your body language:

1) No Slouching: A potential supplier recently spent 45 minutes in front of me slouched to the side in his chair during our conversation. Was he really interested in getting the deal? Try sitting at the front of the seat, leaning slightly forward.

2) No Scowling: Would you really like to work with someone who always looked angry? Lighten up, and smile from time to time.

3) No Shoulder Surfing: If your eyes are always darting over the shoulder, seemingly interested in something else, then the assumption will be made that you are… interested in something else.  This is even more important when so many meeting are conducted through zoom: keep your eyes on the camera! Keeping eye contact shows sincerity. 

4) No Performance: If you are usually a restrained person, act that way. If you are usually outgoing and extroverted, then act that way. If you try to be someone you’re not, it will look like you’re hiding something.  It’s easier to be who you are – authenticity shows.

There are dozens of other body language clues, but start with these four.


Before your next meeting with your colleagues, clients, or prospects, make sure that you know your message. Then work on your body language – small things can make the biggest difference.

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