Guest Post by Diane Craig of Corporate Class Inc.
Executive Presence – what is it? Well, it’s neither exclusive nor elusive, which means you can get it! People aren’t “born” with Executive Presence. Yes, for some it comes more naturally because they inheritably express certain characteristics that are closely linked to Executive Presence. However, for those who do not exhibit these characteristics, there is no need to fret. Executive Presence can absolutely be learned, although it is important to keep in mind that it is a process, not an event. Developing your Executive Presence takes time, hard work and dedication, but in the end, it will set you apart from all others at the table.
To make this journey a little easier for you, we’ve put together 27 quick tips on how you can increase your Executive Presence on the spot. Here they are:
- Increase you focus – staying focused and in the moment is one of the easiest ways to increase your EP on the spot.
- Create a personalized, professional voicemail greeting.
- Update your LinkedIn picture every year or so, or if you change your “look” (and be sure it is a professional picture! Your kids are certainly great, but save that for Facebook).
- Connect with your eyes – eye contact goes a long way in helping to express your EP.
- Don’t gossip! Unless it’s positive gossip.
- Recognize that your appearance matters, and realize the impact of presenting a professional image.
- Do a wardrobe cleanse every season to get rid of things you no longer wear or are out of style. This will assure you are always presenting your best, most stylish self.
- Prepare (at least mentally) what you are going to wear the night before.
- Get enough sleep – nothing says “Lack of EP” more than someone falling asleep during a meeting!
- Always be on time (and by on time, we mean a bit early).
- Practice power posing before a situation where you may feel tense or nervous.
- Always carry an abundance of business cards – you never know who you will meet and where.
- Attend networking events – even if they make you feel uncomfortable!
- Increase your emotional intelligence – for this, you may need to work a little longer and harder, but a good place to start is by trying to be more empathic to others.
- When networking, set yourself a goal, such as connecting with three people before you leave.
- Show your attention to detail through your impeccable grooming – the most important piece of appearance is your grooming!
- Your network is your net-worth – always be thinking about growing your network, both professional and personal.
- If you don’t already know it, learn about your company’s corporate culture and what they stand for. Do you fit in? Can you make any adjustments?
- Learn the political landscape of your company. For more information, check out our blog series on The Secret Handshake.
- When giving a presentation, make sure you hit all four corners of the room with your eyes, so that everyone feels included – they will be more likely and willing to listen to you!
- This is probably the easiest and fastest way to help increase your EP on the spot.
- Keep a clean and organized desk space – especially if you’re in an open-office environment.
- Replace “Yes, or” “Yes, but” and “no” with “Yes, and.”
- Listen more.
- Write thank-you notes.
These are some excellent on-the-spot tactics you can apply immediately that will instantly make a big impact on your Executive Presence. For more information on how you can further increase your EP, feel free to check out our Courses, Workshops and Lunch and Learns!