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December 21, 2017

Own the Room by Building Your Leadership Presence

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Jeff Cochran

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You know it when you see it. Someone walks in the room and before they even speak, they exude authority and trustworthiness. Presence is difficult to define, but it can be developed. It doesn’t come from achieving results, and it isn’t always dependent on personality; instead, impression management plays a big part. Teach sales professionals to show up the way they want others to see them for improved success.

Focus on Authenticity

You want to create an impression of confidence and ability, but developing presence isn’t about pretending to be something you’re not. Draw others in and have a positive impact by being your best self.

What are your biggest strengths? When you were most successful, what key traits did you display to bring about that success? What are your best listening skills? Analyze where you are strongest and allow those traits to amplify as you develop your personal presence.

ConfidenceChange Your Posture

Self-confidence is an element critical to success. Sales might be one of the professions where projecting self-confidence is most challenging, since every interaction holds the potential for rejection. Men and women who have been in the profession for any length of time have been rejected, caught off guard, asked unanswerable questions and received criticism for the products and services they represent.

Project confidence by first changing your physical posture. Draw your shoulders back and raise your chin. If it helps, stand for a minute with your hands on your hips like a comic book superhero and find the confidence that lies within.

Activate confidence not just in your body, but in your brain by thinking back to when you met your goals, communicated successfully and walked out of a meeting feeling like a rock star. You don’t need to play back every aspect of the interaction, just connect with the emotional memory and bring back that positive sensation.

Practice Composure

Even if you walk in full of self-confidence, your feelings can quickly deflate under pressure. Recognize that even if things go well, your body will experience stress. Make sure your body language continues to communicate authority.

Know your product or service, understand why it’s the best value for your client, and allow stress to roll off your back. Recognize that judgement, criticism, and suspicion aren’t about you and respond from a position of calm. Your truthfulness, empathy, and credibility will build the solid relationships that lead to success.

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