Leadership

Charisma in six steps

Written by ProfitGuide

Bill Clinton has it. Colin Powell does, too. Princess Diana and Pope John Paul II had it big time, as did President Kennedy. “It” is the ability to send silent messages that make an immediate positive impression on others. They call it star quality in Hollywood; in the military, it’s command presence. The good news: it’s available and accessible to all of us, says contributor David Stauffer in Getting People on Board. His suggestions include:

  1. Develop a positive outlook. You’re at a disadvantage if you hope to send out positive vibes when your own outlook is neutral or negative. Even if you can’t create an air of relentless joy, try at least to take a favourable view of the meeting, reception or other event at hand.
  2. Get outside yourself. If you go into an interpersonal encounter with your mind focused on your own concerns, you make it impossible to have a favourable instant effect on others. Focus your attention on others by giving them the following Four Ls technique, noted by author and speaker Sam Horn:
    • Look at others with interest;
    • Lean forward slightly, as if to catch every word;
    • Lift your eyebrows;
    • Level your approach by sitting with others who are sitting and standing with those who are standing.
  3. Smile. Simply put, it’s hard for anyone to resist a genuine smile.
  4. Exercise and eat right. People who are physically fit have a bounce in their step and a vibrancy in complexion that can unquestionably appeal to others.
  5. Listen. Perhaps the most common thought occupying the minds of people going into an interpersonal interaction is, “What will I say?” It’s a worry that may visibly show, and could much more productively be flipped to put the pressure to perform on everyone else: “What will they say?” When you are completely receptive to others instead of focused on yourself, the pressure is off. Moreover, truly listening can be your secret weapon that prompts others to form favourable impressions of you; everyone wants to feel important and heard.
  6. Be yourself. You’re more likely to be an instant hit with others if you don’t walk into gatherings silently reciting other peoples’ dos and don’ts. Which is not to say you should ignore the steps outlined here. Rather, internalize them one by one so they become your default behaviour.
Originally appeared on PROFITguide.com