Be mindful that your body language tells your story better than your words ever could. Imagine this scenario:
You are early for an important business meeting (as you should always be) and have been asked to wait in the reception area until they are ready for you. You are sending out a few last minute emails on your smart phone. Your arms are on your knees and you are hunched over looking at your phone. Your meeting has begun and you aren’t even aware… but you should be. Your body language is already speaking volumes to your colleague walking up to greet you; and it isn’t a positive story.
Every signal you give, even if you think nobody is watching, is saying something about you. Make sure it is positive at all possible opportunities.
“In an important meeting, everything has to be taken into consideration – what you’re wearing, how you approach, what you say, but also, what you are doing,” says Roy Murad, Entrepreneur and Business Consultant. “Are you looking the other person in the eye? Are you looking off into the distance? Are you playing on your phone? Do your shoulders droop? A good business person will watch your non-verbal “tells”… and make judgments that might not be accurate or in your favour.”
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Body Language – Put Your Phone Away
So many people today cannot be disconnected from their phone for minutes, let alone for the duration of a meeting. But that is really the worst move you can make. Even a quick glance at your phone during a meeting tells the other person or people that you are uninterested, unfocused and shows an ultimate lack of respect. That is not the tone you want to set in any business meeting.
“You either feel comfortable with someone or you don’t,” continues Roy. “You have gone out of your way to secure this meeting. You’ve shown up (early) and you’ve prepared your talking points of your pitch. Why ruin it with something so simple as placing your phone on the table beside you or crossing your arms across your chest. A little self-awareness can be the difference between a successful meeting or an early end to the relationship.”
Part of your meeting preparation should consist of a conscious review of good non-verbal cues and a commitment to become more aware of the negative cues you unconsciously send out. Nobody is perfect, but being mindful of the barriers to any meeting will increase your chance of success.
Roy Murad is a father, husband, business consultant, investor, advocate for new business ventures, and consummate entrepreneur. Over the course of 35 years building businesses, guiding companies and identifying strong investment opportunities, while nurturing a thriving family, Roy Murad has amassed a wealth of experience; experience, that may be of value to others who are looking to shape a balanced and successful life experience