Body Language tips for presentations

Today, we rely heavily on technological tools for us to communicate easily. We can get our ideas across, whether it be by emailing, using social media or signing on to a virtual conference. Although, we must not forget the most important interaction, face to face communication. The body language you show in the office can positively or negatively affect your work relations. Unprofessional body language can take away from all the hard work you do. When you meet someone in person, you can pick up a lot of information from them, only by reading their body language. You can see whether the person is listening and understanding you, you have an opportunity to clarify your message and you can even show that you are listening to them.

We are busy people in the office but that will never take away from us being, social people as well. Even though, things like smiling when greeting someone seem basic, there are other aspects in body language that are not so easily mastered.

5 body language tips

  1. Walk confidently: Many people walk slouching or looking at the ground. If you walk with purpose and energy, you’ll ensure that people see you as a confident, attractive and trustworthy person. Being someone who is trustworthy is an important aspect to your communication at work.
  2. Maintain eye contact: People can read a lot about you by only looking at your eyes. People with shifty eyes come across as distracted or even dishonest. Maintaining eye contact is a skill that can be uncomfortable at first but with some practice, it can improve your communication at work.
  3. Mirror your audience: A natural way to show that you are understanding and listening to the person with whom you are speaking to is to mirror them. It’s a great way to show agreement and admiration.
  4. Sit up straight: We all remember our parents telling us to constantly sit up straight at the dinner table, but did we listen? Sitting up straight shows that you are prepared and interested in what you are talking about or doing. Maintaining your posture straight, your shoulders back and your head held high makes you look sure of yourself.
  5. Talk with your hands: When you include hand gestures as you are talking, you speak more clearly.  The use of fillers, like uh, or um, tends to decrease and your speech appears less hesitant.  Experiment with this and you might see that your thoughts are less cloudy and your language more declarative.

There are many more body language tips that we can analyze but we have chosen the most important ones that will help you improve your face to face communication at work.  Remember, you have to practice a lot before you master this!

Transcript: Body Language

Nonverbal communication can be just as important as verbal communication in your presentation. Using appropriate gestures will help maintain your audience’s attention, interest, and make you appear more relaxed and natural. Your two main tools for nonverbal communication are your hands and your eyes. You should always try to maintain an upright posture, don’t slouch and avoid repetitive gestures, and avoid putting your hands in your pockets or looking too defensive. There are various things you can do with your hands, and why is it good. If you wave your hands too much, then use a pen just to anchor your hands, and then you can move, and signal and it anchors your body. It’s good to use your hands, it gets off nervous energy, it makes you more interesting. It makes you look more natural, it adds emphasis and it adds emotion, and variety to your voice as well. Making eye contact is pretty important, if you’re in a physical environment with your audience you should always be looking around and keeping them focused on you. Even when you are in a virtual environment giving a presentation like I am with you now, look into the camera people will feel the connection from you, and will pay more attention because you are looking at them. Ok, so two things, your hands and your eyes to get people’s attention. Good luck!