If you’re going to get anywhere in business, you need people to take you seriously.
According to the research, you can increase your credibility with the right presentation, knowledge, and people skills. ( Source: Business Insider)
Let people talk about themselves.
Here’s a secret to making a good impression: Let people talk about themselves.
According to Harvard research, talking about yourself stimulates the same brain regions as sex or a good meal.
“Activation of this system when discussing the self suggests that self-disclosure … may be inherently pleasurable,” Scientific American reports.
And when people talk about their experiences, they become more vulnerable to one another, and when they become more vulnerable to one another, they form social bonds and coinvest in one another’s welfare.
Dress the part.
“Appearance is our first filter,” says Sylvia Ann Hewlett, author of the book “Executive Presence.” “And it’s happening all the time.”
Princeton researchers have found that it takes about 100 milliseconds to register a first impression, or as long as a hummingbird flaps its wings.
“The really good news here is that it’s about polish, grooming, and being put together,” Hewlett says. “It’s not about the precise shape of your body, texture of your hair, or the designer you wear.”
You don’t have to wear a gray suit all the time, she says. Instead, pay attention to how the best-dressed people in your organization and industry put themselves together, then pattern after them.
Master the handshake.
A strong handshake isn’t a matter of squeezing somebody’s paw.
It’s a matter of presence.
Esquire’s Tom Chiarella details how to exude it:
On the street, in the lobby, square your shoulders to people you meet. Make a handshake matter — eye contact, good grip, elbow erring toward a right angle. Do not pump the hand, unless the other person is insistent on just that. Then pump the hell out of their hand. Smile. If you can’t smile, you can’t be gracious. You aren’t some dopey English butler. You are you.
A handshake like that shows that you’re paying respect to the person you’re talking to, and as science has confirmed, giving respect gets respect.
Keep your posture expansive.
Your posture has a huge effect on the way you feel, the way you present yourself, and how other people receive your presence.
For instance, if you do the standard “power pose” of keeping your shoulders open and arms wide, that will tell your hormone system to release the chemicals needed to make you look and feel more confident.
“If you take an expansive pose, it can actually lead to power,” MIT professor Andy Yap tells Business Insider.
Know what’s going on in the world.
Alan Crowhurst/Getty Images
The best-selling game developer Valve likes to hire “T-shaped” employees, meaning they have deep expertise in one area coupled with interest across a range of subjects.
That pattern can be expanded to anybody’s career.
If you work in business, then “be up to speed on changes in your industry so you can speak about them intelligently,” says Roberta Matuson. The “Suddenly in Charge” author recommends reading business news daily “so you can speak intelligently on business matters.”
But you need a broad base of knowledge, too — so keep up with science, tech, and popular culture.
To improve your reading habits, read this.
To be continued