Executive presence is easy to see and yet hard to define.
When you have it, people will want to listen to you, follow you, do business with you, and introduce you to others. So how can you develop a powerful executive presence too? The key skills and mindsets we help to develop with our clients are:
What unique thoughts do you have that you can share with others? You are an expert in your field. You may be the most knowledgeable person in your industry. But if you cannot communicate that knowledge, skill or insight to lots of people, you won’t get the recognition you deserve. You will need a different approach to be able to spread your ideas.
The way we present ourselves speaks volumes about us as professionals. Dress appropriately and be authentic. What you wear should make you feel confident and fulfilled. Polished personal style isn’t just about the clothing you wear; it’s about how you feel in those clothes, and how you appear to others.
Your physical presence is more than your body language. It’s your confidence, spirit, and energy. Work on your core muscles, physical fitness and posture. Eat and rest well. People notice and it says a lot about your professionalism.
Knowing how to use your voice effectively is one of the secrets to standing out. Learn to speak with Clarity, Brevity and Impact. Understand how to have a conversation with your audiences when you present. Your presentation skills should demonstrate your authenticity.
Listening is a core leadership skill. Those who listen stand out and are remembered. Listening includes being accessible, encouraging people to express themselves, listening with mindfulness, not speaking too much, and taking a genuine interest in others. Developing your coaching skills is one way of improving your listening skills.
It sounds obvious, but good manners are essential to having executive presence. Etiquette is easy if you remember a few things:
- treat others as you wish to be treated
- put their comfort ahead of your own
- be gracious and charming to everyone you meet.
People may not comment on your manners, but they will certainly notice them.
Your work space is a reflection of you and how you work. A messy office does not look good. Clear it out, find a home for everything and keep electronic files of most documents. Make your office space an organised and attractive environment for you and others to be. This is not only important to your image, it will also help you feel better.
You can read Part 1 here.