Body Talk

I read recently an article in PR Week that covered five tips to engage audiences. The first tip was ‘use your body to make a first impression’ and this reminded me of my old boss and his mantra that “the first few minutes of a meeting are what counts”.

A few years ago, Carol Kinsey Goman wrote in Forbes about ‘Seven Seconds to Make a First Impression’. She cited researchers from NYU which found that we make eleven major decisions about one another in the first seven seconds of meeting.

It seems that my boss was right – first impressions are the most important. Body language alone can make or break the impression you leave on others and determine how well that meeting goes. For example, mirroring body language indicates an empathy with the other person, putting them at ease and showing that they are understood.

The PR Week article took this concept a step further, looking at how we can ensure that our audience truly understands what we are saying. The Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts’ business tutor gave PR Week the following top five tips:

  1. Use your body to make a first impression
  2. Stand or sit as if you own your space
  3. Make the most of your voice
  4. Be expressive
  5. Smile and listen well

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