Tuesday, October 04, 2016

As Mother Said, Don't Slouch, Don't Mumble

Not very warm and fuzzy (Wisdom Times image)
CEO's make a lot of money. On the other hand they're scrutinized more closely than ever, and mistakes are often recorded for posterity. They have to be "on" all the time. And that's over and above getting the facts right and making good decisions.
New research shows that striking the right balance of power and authority with warmth and empathy is essential. If executives’ body language conveys too many power signals, they appear aloof. But too much warmth can prevent them from setting themselves apart and commanding the attention of others.
Some of the public speaking tips per the WSJ article are:
  • Keep your head straight.
  • Eye contact: not too little or not too much and don't lower your eyes (take it from me, Asians have a hard time with this one).
  • Point with your hand, not your index finger.
  • "Move around on stage...to convey energy and engage audiences."

    Personally, I like moving-while-talking, because it means that the speaker does not need a teleprompter and knows the subject matter cold. For video productions, though, unless you have a cameraman who tracks the speaker, stifle excess, distracting movement.

    As looking good becomes ever more important, the hardest part, IMHO, is the discipline to get enough sleep and hit the gym. Too bad they never taught me that in business school.
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