What do people see when they look at you? A strong, natural leader? Or someone who fades into the background? They say that people form a first impression within the first 30 to 120 seconds of meeting a new person. These impressions typically follow a person through a relationship, so a poor first impression can have long-lasting consequences. Although there are a range of factors that go into how a person perceives you, one that can be particularly influential is your body language. Take a look at our tips for making sure you’re sending the right signals:
- Avoid sitting with your arms crossed. The person who takes up the most physical space in a contained group setting is generally perceived to be dominant over his or her peers. Habitually folding your arms creates the impression you’re trying to take up as little space as possible and fade into the background.
- Sitting with your chin in your hands is another posture to avoid. This position is overly casual for most professional settings and can make you look inexperienced and unprofessional.
- Eye contact is one of the most effective ways to convey confidence. Look your conversation partner or audience in the eye as you speak. To avoid staring them down in an unnerving way, momentarily shift your gaze to the side every 4-5 seconds. For the most natural effect, try timing this to when you finish a thought or sentence.
- Your posture can make or break your first impression. Stand straight with your shoulders back and your chin level with the floor. Imagine a string running through your body from the top of your head through your tailbone with a gentle force pulling on it from above.
Do you want to take your communication to the next level? Give us a call and see how Corporate Speech Solutions can improve your professional life! Call us at 212-308-7725 or send us an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more. I’d be more than happy to answer any questions you might have!
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