How to Run an Effective Meeting Using Nonverbal Communication


Nonverbal communication can make or break your chances of creating a positive impression in the corporate world. How you carry yourself says something about you, so even the slightest negative impression your body posture creates can bring success or failure in terms of other people’s judgment. Appropriate gestures, correct posture, good eye contact, and an air of poise and confidence all make big differences. Managing a business meeting with self-confidence demonstrates your ability to manage your business successfully.

Step 1

Relax and think positive. There’s no better way to create a positive impression than to have an overall positive feeling that the meeting will turn out well. Only a positive mental attitude can make your confident that you will do well in your meeting and everything else follows. Present yourself in a genuinely relaxed manner. When you appear relaxed, your colleagues will take your lead. During the meeting an atmosphere of calm business dealing will make all participants more open to the information presented. Do some body stretching or breathing exercises just before the meeting and focus again on the favorable response of your colleagues. Also, smile. Nothing beats smiling as a way to calm your nerves. Just make sure you don’t put off other attendees by overdoing it, so try to look natural.

Step 2

Make eye contact with every speaker. Positioning your body toward the speakers creates the impression you engage everyone in conversation. Make sure to turn off your phone or put it in silent mode to avoid distractions. Make sure to keep your legs and arms uncrossed, since crossing them gives an air of hesitancy and unease. Nod if you agree with what the speaker is saying and ask questions when needed but do it at the right time and not when the speaker is still in the middle of his presentation. When someone shares a complaint or bad news, make it a point to listen actively and show genuine concerned interest.

Step 3

Avoid fidgeting and remain focused. Restlessness creates an impression of nervousness or uncertainty among clients and colleagues. Your colleagues may also mistake it as if you’re not interested or you’re bothered by something even though you’re not. Fidgeting may also distract the current speaker and that can affect his line of thought. Do not make the mistake of leading the people present in the meeting to think negatively about you and your actions.

Step 4

Consider cultural differences in business etiquette. Standards for greetings and seating arrangement vary from one culture to another. If you are meeting with a foreigner, it helps to research about the standard business ethics in that person’s country. To avoid making a mistake that might offend your clients, guide your colleagues on your client’s cultural expectations before a meeting as well.

Step 5

Choose a seat where you can see everyone. This will enable you to make eye contact at least once with whomever attends the meeting. Also, it allows you to keep everyone engaged on the topics you discuss.

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About the Author: Marie Mayle is a contributor to the MegaHowTo team, writer, and entrepreneur based in California USA. She holds a degree in Business Administration. She loves to write about business and finance issues and how to tackle them.

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