I was working with a client today on how he could influence an MD from the introduction onwards. Both he and I agreed that in order for him to feel confident, we felt it was important to have a strategy for the content of what he wanted to say.
Frankly however, the impression he makes on the leader won’t be what he says, it will be how he walks into the room. In other words, before he opens his mouth!
People make decisions about you in the first 7 seconds of their meeting you (Science Daily April 2008 ). They can track you unconsciously even when they are talking to someone else and catch sight of you in their peripheral vision. The unconscious can process far more information and pick up the ‘invisible’ communication of body language and voice that betray your attitude, you confidence, your intentions.
So I could have worked with my client on his body language and voice today. However my view was that it would be superimposing artificial and rehearsed acting. I chose to work instead on his confidence that determines his body language and his voice. From now on, he will open the door and walk with a firmer step, not because he has been tutored in walking firmly. It will come through because he is more sure of himself in his every gesture, in every vocal inflection, in every facial expression.