Using Body Language in Business
Starting in the first ten seconds a business associate or client meets you, he/she has already begun to form an opinion of you. This occurs through not only what they hear, but also every little detail that they see. Your body language is very powerful in business.
In fact, body language can give others an image of your power, too. If you are in a room with business associates and you wish to appear powerful, you can stand during the meeting. This gives the impression of power.
Moving around makes you seem even more powerful, and others might feel threatened by your body language. This might go too far. You can still give an image of power and confidence if you are sitting. Just use up as much space as possible. Stretch out your legs, open up your arms, do anything to make yourself seem bigger.
Showing confidence is as important in business as showing power. One way to show confidence through your body language is to keep from moving your head around too much. If your head is always in motion, it makes you appear to be the kind of person who seeks approval.
Your eyes can help you to show confidence through your body language. If you maintain eye contact a good portion of the time, you will feel confident and honest as well. Blink too much and you will appear to have a lack of confidence, so try not to blink excessively. The body language of your eyes is critical.
Negotiating a sale or other type of business deal can go more smoothly if you know a little about body language. To make a customer or business associate feel more at ease during negotiations, you can try mirroring.
Mirroring is a type of body language in which you subtly mimic the movements of the other person. This makes them feel comfortable with you and more willing to follow your lead. Once they are at that point, you can try a method called tracking.
In tracking, you start out mirroring. Then, you gently guide the person by making more and more open and positive body language movements. If the person follows your lead, you will be in a good position to make a sale or to complete the negotiations in your favor.
If a person starts out with a closed posture he/she might be hard to deal with at first. The signs are folded arms, crossed legs, and maybe a turning away from you. If you mirror and then use tracking, you may begin to see a change. His/her body language might change to an open position. This usually means your methods are working.
If you are trying to make a sale and your customer is always touching his/her hand to his/her face, you need to give this body language your attention. It usually means that they want to buy if only they can resolve some issue they have with the purchase. If you don't step in at this point, the customer may just walk away never quite knowing why he/she didn't buy. If you try to help them figure it out, you will probably make a sale.
In business, things aren't always what they seem. You need to be able to project the image that is conducive to the type of business you are trying to do. You need to be able to identify your business associates' attitudes. With a working knowledge of body language, you can do this.