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If you work in a corporate job, start-up or a business and constantly feel the pressure to make your presence felt at work, then this blog is for you.
Often, professionals focus on their technical/core skills but completely miss the plot when it comes to presentation skills and building genuine charisma. This often looks unimportant in the beginning but these missing traits turn out to be the main reason why people don’t get promoted or even recognized for their efforts at the job.
There is absolutely no question on the fact that presentation and personality are crucial business skills. So here are the top 5 ways in which you can mark your presence at work
People focus primarily on their education and work experience when asked to talk about themselves but rarely focus on who they are as individuals. First write an elevator pitch for yourself. An elevator pitch is a brief yet powerful introduction about yourself which highlights your Unique Selling Proposition (USP), your work profile and some personal information. People are tired of listening to the same old description about your education and work experience. So ditch that boring rhetoric, you deserve a better introduction.
Humour is definitely a trait that most interesting people possess. You must be ready to joke about yourself first. This trait can make you easily likeable to others. In today’s stressful times, people look out for a breather and what better than finding their own colleagues with whom they have to spend almost 8 hours each day. So stop being serious all the time, start smiling and spread happiness, and you will soon realise that you have become indispensable in other people’s lives.
The world has moved beyond the handshakes and eye contacts. Body language is a huge science that must be used and comprehended effectively. If you wish to get noticed at your workplace, then you need to first look approachable. But there are many ways to not look approachable.
If you slouch often, cross your arms or legs, take less physical space in a meeting room and hide your palms, then you are surely missing the game. The most effective power body language move is to claim your territorial space. You can do this by standing hip width apart instead of closed feet. You can also display your hand gestures while making a point. Open hand gestures are very effective in exuding power.
It is not always about what you say but how you say. You have a definite advantage at work if you have a powerful/deep voice with lots of expression. People not only listen to you, but they also understand you better. Essentially there are five main components to one’s voice:
If you have a problem of speaking too fast then you might want to practice speaking low and slow because a fast rate of speech not only hampers your sentence clarity but also leads to lack of expression in the voice. When delivering presentations, you need to slow down by 20% of your normal pace.
Being soft spoken is good but speaking on a low note has a direct repercussion on one’s confidence. So ensure that you are audible enough to mark your presence especially in a group meeting or a team event. There are some people who have a naturally powerful voice like Barack Obama and Oprah Winfrey but some of us have a weak vocal texture. But you can absolutely develop a better vocal texture or quality with professional help in voice coaching.
Every industry has its own dressing requirement but more important is your own individual style or personal style. Mostly our thought process behind dressing up for work is to belong to the crowd. My clients often tell me how they hardly apply their own creative thinking to dress to work and blindly follow the trends at work.
The lack of individualistic expression in dressing can have long term repercussions on our behavior at work. Because we dress commonly, we behave commonly. We shy away from making our mark in our projects, we cringe from adding our own points in meetings, we avoid looking at problems from different perspectives and before we realize, we become totally unnoticeable at work.
So open your wardrobe, pick up a common shirt/kurta which you usually wear with pants or churidar and either replace the pant with a skirt (long or short) or add a scarf or a beautiful statement neck-piece.
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Woman at work image via Shutterstock
Shreya Dhingra is a certified Image Communication Coach practicing since 5 years. She works with individuals and corporates on every aspect of their image. Right from professional wardrobe and style analysis to speech skills and read more...
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