A smile can change your future, and your business

Smiles release serotonin and dopamine in your brain, and that helps improve your mood

A smile can change your future, and your businessWhenever I give a presentation on the impact of body language in the workplace, I always include a section on the power of a smile. That’s because research shows that facial expressions send feedback from your face to your left frontal cortex, which in turn triggers the release of the neurotransmitters serotonin and dopamine into…

Your gender may dictate how effectively you communicate

The most effective communicators come across as both confident and caring

Your gender may dictate how effectively you communicateA few years ago, I conducted research in the United States, Europe and Canada to see how gender differences in communication were displayed in the workplace. The first thing I found was that both men and women identified the same sets of strengths and weaknesses in themselves and each other. Top three communication strengths for…

Body language secrets for people who hate networking

6 changes you can make to your body language that can turn that networking experience from frightening to fun

Body language secrets for people who hate networkingImagine that you are at a networking event with the intent of doing business with some of the other attendees. In your mind, how’s that going for you? Do you see yourself socializing with ease and grace, or – if you are anything like me – has the very word “networking” increased your stress level…

How to supercharge your success in 2022

Our tips to make the most out of what you have to offer

How to supercharge your success in 2022I once gave a seminar on leadership presence for the executive team of a high-tech company in northern California. The next day, the president of the company phoned and said: “I have an administrative assistant who is the brightest, most creative person I’ve worked with. The problem is, we’re relocating and she can’t move her…

How Santa knows if you were naughty or nice

Here are some of his secrets

How Santa knows if you were naughty or niceHave you ever wondered how Santa Claus determines whether to leave you a present or a lump of coal on Christmas? How he knows if you’ve been naughty or nice? I don’t have any hard evidence to back me up, but I’m pretty sure that he must be a first-class lie detector. If so, here…

10 powerful and simple body language tips

Sometimes the smallest body language change can bring powerful results

10 powerful and simple body language tipsEvidence from psychology, neuroscience, sociology, and anthropology has given nonverbal communication new credence in the workplace. One example is a study at the University of Glasgow’s Centre for Cognitive Neuroimaging that discovered it takes the brain just 200 milliseconds to gather most of the information it needs from a facial expression to determine a person’s…

10 change management strategies backed by science

Offers insights for helping us deal with change

10 change management strategies backed by scienceI’ve been studying change leadership for over 25 years, but only recently have researchers been able to use technology like functional magnetic resonance imagery (fMRI) to look at the brain and see what actually happens when we’re facing a major organizational change. For example, most of our daily activities, including many of our work habits,…

True grit is the great equalizer in life

With grit, there’s no telling how far you can go

True grit is the great equalizer in lifeLouis Pasteur, the French chemist and microbiologist renowned for his discoveries of the principles of vaccination, microbial fermentation and pasteurization, once said, “Let me tell you the secret that has led to achieving my goals: My strength lies solely in my tenacity.” Pasteur would have approved of Grit to Great by Linda Kaplan Thaler and Robin…

Body language tips for the holiday office party

A holiday get-together can quickly turn into a career-limiting event

Body language tips for the holiday office partyThe holiday office party offers a great opportunity to socialize with co-workers, meet new people, and develop or deepen relationships. However, a holiday get-together can also quickly turn into a career-limiting event unless you understand the do's and don'ts of appropriate behaviour. The desire to relax and have fun can be a highly anticipated, positive antidote…

Why first impressions can harm your career

7 body language tips for making a positive first impression

Why first impressions can harm your careerTwo seconds – 30 seconds, tops – that’s all the time it takes to assess your confidence, competence, status, likeability, warmth, and trustworthiness. That’s how much time you have to make a first impression. In fact, it’s impossible for us not to make these snap judgments about one another. Human beings are wired that way.…

The 10 questions change leaders must answer first

Change leaders need to ask themselves some difficult questions before they set out to "shake things up"

The 10 questions change leaders must answer firstA few years ago I read a news story about an executive who had been hired to turn around the fortunes of a business that was on the rocks. The product was bad. Morale was awful. Management appeared to be confused about what to do. And customers were staying away in droves. Clearly, this fellow…

5 strategies to increase your leadership presence

Leadership depends entirely on how other people in the workplace evaluate you

5 strategies to increase your leadership presenceLeadership presence, that illusive but “we know it when we see it” quality, is a blending of personal and interpersonal skills which, when combined, send all the right signals. It’s how you show up, how you make others feel, and how effectively you communicate both verbally and non-verbally. It’s the “wow” factor that sets you…

Five tips to spotting liars at work

While not foolproof, these tips are strong indicators of possible deception

Five tips to spotting liars at workHere are my tips to help in spotting liars at work. 1. Begin with a baseline Spotting liars begins with observing a person’s baseline behaviour under relaxed or generally stress-free conditions so that you can detect meaningful deviations. One of the strategies experienced interviewers use is to ask a series of simple questions while observing…

Improve your personal curb appeal to kick-start your career

A positive personal "curb appeal" leads to more success in your career

Improve your personal curb appeal to kick-start your careerI've learned a few things about selling a house. I know, for instance, that much depends on timing (economic timing as well as the time of year you put the house on the market), and of course the mantra "location, location, location" is still paramount. I've also found out that a property needs "curb appeal."…

How to deal with your boss’s conflicting messages

If the words don't match the body language, watch out

How to deal with your boss’s conflicting messagesYour boss is giving advice about dealing with representatives of another company. 'I want to finesse them on this deal,' he says. But as he speaks, he pounds his fist on the desk. You hear what the manager says, but you also see his aggressive gesture. You leave the meeting confused about what the manager…

There is a high cost to workplace deception

An organizational strategy for reducing lies and increasing candour at work

There is a high cost to workplace deceptionLies in the workplace are expensive. According to the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners, a typical organization loses five per cent of its revenue to fraud – a potential global loss of $3.5 trillion. But the cost of out-and-out fraud pales in comparison to the monumental cost of the erosion of trust that occurs when…

How to avoid these five common body language mistakes

And gain significant advantages on how you deal with people

How to avoid these five common body language mistakesHumans are genetically programmed to look for facial and behavioural cues and to quickly understand their meaning. We see someone gesture and automatically make a judgment about the intention of that gesture. And we've been doing this for a long time. As a species, we knew how to win friends and influence people – or…

Simple but powerful body language tips that exude charisma

Charismatic leaders are perceived to be confident, upbeat and inspirational

Simple but powerful body language tips that exude charismaIn business dealings, charisma counts. A lot. And charisma is as much about impressions and body language as it is about issues and substance. I've seen many qualified people get passed over for promotion (or lose a sale or fail an interview) simply because they couldn’t project an engaging attitude. Max Weber, the father of…

How women can successfully project their leadership presence

Your leadership ability depends entirely on how others evaluate you

How women can successfully project their leadership presenceYou may have a leadership title or tremendous leadership potential, but that in itself doesn’t give you leadership presence. Here are typical comments I hear when asked to coach an up-and-coming female whose career has stalled: “It isn’t that she couldn’t do the next job. It’s that no one on the executive team sees her…

Assertive women perceived negatively in business

To groom women for top positions, offer them the coaching, mentoring, and career opportunities that develop leadership potential

Assertive women perceived negatively in businessAs a speaker at business conferences, I've addressed organizations around the world, and I've seen the genuine commitment that many companies have made to develop the leadership abilities of female employees and to create workplace environments with family-friendly policies and flexible work arrangements – all in hopes of attracting, retaining and grooming women for top…

When is it OK to tell lies at work?

When asked if it was ever okay to lie at work, most people said 'yes!', but only under certain circumstances

When is it OK to tell lies at work?We tell all sorts of lies at work. We flatter, exaggerate, omit, and mislead – primarily to avoid punishment, make ourselves look better, control information, or protect others. Some of our workplaces lies trigger feelings of anxiety, guilt, or remorse. But there are other lies that many of us feel justified in telling. As background…

How to ace a job interview in 7 seconds

Seven powerful ways to make a positive first impression

How to ace a job interview in 7 secondsThe interviewer looks up as you enter the room for a job interview. Now count slowly to seven. In that amount of time, you will have been evaluated – and decisions will have been made about your credibility, trustworthiness, confidence and competence. According to research at New York University, you've got just seven seconds to make…

Hoarding information a collaboration killer

Collaboration is also intrinsically inspiring because it has an emotional payoff. People like being part of a winning team

Hoarding information a collaboration killerSome years ago, when I was speaking to a group of executives about change leadership, the topic of collaboration came up. On a whim I asked, "How many of you are totally comfortable sharing information with others in your organization?" I was astonished when, out of an audience of about 200, only three hands went…

Why you can’t fake your feelings

If you try to fake how you really feel, your audience won’t buy it

Why you can’t fake your feelingsI was once asked by a Senior Vice President of Human Resources to work with a leader whose micro-management was limiting her team’s effectiveness. When I met with the client (let’s call her Judith), she was effusive with her praise – going on and on about how much she had heard about me and how…

How unforgettable leaders inspire loyalty

Inspiring loyalty takes leaders with insight into the human heart and sensitivity toward the hopes and aspirations of others

How unforgettable leaders inspire loyaltyThink loyalty is dead? Think again. Loyalty may not look like it did 25 years ago – when companies offered career-long employment and workers unquestioningly followed orders – but loyalty is far from deceased. Loyalty is an intrinsic human characteristic based on emotional attachment that can be tapped, nurtured and developed. Inspiring loyalty takes leaders…

Five reasons you may be judged untrustworthy

And why you can't stop anyone from making these snap decisions

Five reasons you may be judged untrustworthyKnowing whom to trust is an important social and business skill. But it’s not that simple – although it’s fast. It took me just seven seconds to assess your confidence, competence, status, likability, warmth and, yes, your trustworthiness. You can’t stop me (or anyone, for that matter) from making these snap decisions. The human brain…

Why it’s hard to spot a liar

The act of lying triggers a heightened stress response

Why it’s hard to spot a liarA short time after The Truth About Lies in the Workplace was published, I received this email: I had just begun reading your book, and had gotten to the part about body language signs that point to someone who is lying when I was confronted with a real-life situation. A parcel (that was meant to…

Ten body language myths that limit success 

Body language plays a key role in your career but don’t limit your success by buying into these myths

Ten body language myths that limit success Body language plays a key role in your career – from your first job interview to the ongoing process of building professional relationships to being perceived as having leadership presence. But not everything you’ve heard about body language is accurate. Don’t limit your success by buying into these 10 myths: Using body language to make…

5 mistakes people make reading body language at work

If you accurately decode body language cues, you'll be well on your way to gaining the nonverbal advantage!

5 mistakes people make reading body language at workHuman beings are genetically programmed to look for facial and behavioural cues and to quickly understand their meaning. We see someone gesture and automatically make a judgment about the intention of that gesture. And we've been doing this for a long, long time. As a species we knew how to win friends and influence people…
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