Lilly, comes from Russia…
She’s excellent at English which is the language she uses for work, although it is not her first language. But she feels massively unconfident. She facilitates meetings daily and feels held back by invisible forces that reduce her perceived authority, like pronunciation and accent. But there is another factor to think about: SMILES
A lot of people when they enter a business meeting feel insecure and lacking in authority. Even if they officially have the authority, it can be hard to express it in a way that isn’t aggressive. Here we might ask, what is authority? I’ll have a go at answering that question but I’d love to hear your thoughts. Authority is what gives us stability. Is the world round or flat? Do you brush your teeth three times a day? Do you eat 5 fruit and veg a day? Do you feel valued and important? The answers to these questions depend on the authority we choose to listen to. And if you choose no authority then watch how fast your world becomes unstable.
So now we have defined authority as what gives stability we may wonder about the value of a smile.
A smile reassures, relaxes and encourages. I recommend smiling to express your authority. “Thanks for attending the meeting everyone (big genuine smile).” “We have some conflicts to resolve in the team but don’t worry we’ll sort all this out today (genuine smile)”
It’s not all about the way you speak or what you say or how you say it. Your smile is a powerful tool that delivers stability. Combine that smile with unapologetic body language and a voice that speaks without hesitation and people will follow you to the moon (or at least try 😉).
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