Nothing ruins a good look better than bad hands.
You’ve seen it, the “fig leaf” (broadcasting discomfort), “the general” (you will do what I dictate), the “Trump” (arms crossed defensive) or the “air-traffic controller” (wildly gesturing to large aircraft).
So why is this still so pervasive?
Why do so many folks wonder ”What do I do with my hands?”
An old colleague of mine used to answer that one – “I suggest you leave them at the ends of your arms.” A good start to be sure.
A famous research study by Dr. Albert Mehrabian determined that what impresses an audience most is your body language (the visual) at 55% next is the vocal (or quality of the sound) at 38% and finally at a whopping 7% is the verbal (content and word choice)
Every athletic endeavor has a “starting position” – tennis, swimming, golf, baseball, right?
I am a firm believer that speaking effectively to more than 3 people at once is also an athletic endeavor.
What’s your starting position?
The start is the most important part, that’s when everyone is looking at you, waiting to see and hear something that will determine whether they will continue to do so!
You don’t have the luxury of getting comfortable somewhere in the middle.
Comfort is a by-product of control.
When you know what’s actually going on from a body language perspective when you are in control and comfortable – just apply those tactics from the beginning!
Break it down – where are your hands – when do you gesture, how big? Where is your eye contact? Are you modulating your voice, pausing so your audience is “in time with you”?
In order to be engaging – you must be engaged – and act the part.