Have you ever worked for someone who you knew was having a bad day or a good day just by the look on their face? Most of us have sometime in our careers. You may have some of these people on your staff right now. Or, it may be you!
Non-verbal communication can be extremely effective in both a positive and negative way. If used properly, silent leadership can often be more powerful than anything you could possibly say. Those who speak on a regular basis can tell you that the audience will remember a very small percentage of what you say but they will remember how you said what you said and how you made them feel when you said it. This is true whether you are talking on-on-one with someone or, to a large group.
“Body language is one of the most important ways that we communicate with others, yet it is probably the skill that receives the least amount of attention by individuals,” says Anne Baum, author of Small Mistakes, Big Consequences: Develop Your Soft Skills to Help You Succeed. Baum says, “eye contact is incredibly important as a leader. Looking your team members directly in the eye and listening to hear (not just to answer) builds trust between a leader and their team members.
Over the next week, monitor your eye contact and body language and do a self assessment of your performance. Ask those you work with for feedback on your quiet leadership skills.