Are you well on your way to the career of your dreams? Are you armed to the teeth with a formidable education and an enviable resume? If so, does this mean that success in your chosen profession is assured? These are clearly the hallmarks of great things to come. Right?
Well, it certainly can’t hurt to have a deep and broad education. This demonstrates that you have a broad knowledge base and shows you to be persistent, driven, and to have an intellect commiserate with your scholastic accomplishments. A sterling resume can’t hurt either. It shows a track record of social acceptance and conveys a vote of confidence in your skill and reliability. Are these factors, in fact, the roots of your successes or the fruits of something even more fundamental?
It is immediately apparent to us that the foundations of human interaction lies in communication. This is true whether that communication takes place between family members; teachers and students; employers and employees; colleagues and clients or with any other social dichotomy. Simply put communication is the quintessential tool for achieving any sort of social advancement.
Here are some tips for empowering your communications and enhancing your influence at home, at work, or anywhere else that you are determined to shine!
1. Maintain good eye contact.
People instinctively distrust those who won’t look them in the eye. Good eye contact encourages trust and friendliness.
2. Remember names.
Getting into the practice of remembering names serves two vital functions: First, it allows you to focus your full attention on that person while you implement a strategy for recording their name for future reference; and secondly, it makes that person feel more genuinely important to you when you take the trouble to commit their name to memory.
3. Learn to ‘mirror’.
Imitation is a form of flattery and mirroring is a subtle form of imitation. To mirror is to subtly imitate certain mannerisms of the person to whom you are speaking, like their posture or the vocal intonations. But be careful mirroring can easily be misinterpreted as mimicking if done sloppily. Take the time to learn this skill from a qualified trainer it can pay enormous dividends.
4. Intonation manipulation.
We humans are hard-wired to be more responsive to how something is said than to what is being said. It has been demonstrated that an upward inflection in the way we end a statement is generally received as a plea or a request; while a downward inflection is taken as a command. No change of inflection is viewed as disinterest or detachment. If you want to increase your level of persuasion instantly, make it a point to end your requests or statements with a downward inflection. You will be amazed at how much more influential you have become!
5. Sincerity works.
Jean Giraudoux once said “The secret of success is sincerity. Once you can fake that you’ve got it made.” Appearing to understand and to care will do more for your social standing than any other trait.
6. Complain Upward.
We will all have our grievances from time to time. These are inevitable. But when you are ready to voice your complaint, go up the chain of command not down. Complaining downward not only sends the message in the wrong direction, it tells your subordinates that you have lost the reigns of power and are ripe to be replaced.
There is a great deal of anecdotal evidence that suggests that rather than smiling because we are happy, we could very well be happy because we are smiling! EEG scans have been used to record evidence that the human brain ‘lights up’ with happiness after we smile rather than before. We might very well be able to master happiness through the art of face muscle manipulation!
Arm yourself with these easily learnable communication skills and, with a little practice, you will soon be the undisputed master of your career and your life as a whole!