When you appear strong and confident, gaining influence is a much easier job. And projecting a powerful image may not require more than a few tweaks to how you act.
Deborah H. Gruenfeld, a social psychologist, and Kay Kostopolous, a theater instructor, teach the class “Acting With Power” at the Stanford University business school, a class designed to teach you how to gain power by acting powerfully. Here are a few tips from that class:
- Maintain a wide stance, with your arms extended from your body, to feel more authoritative.
- Master eye contact. Look people in the eye when you speak, but when others are talking, look away occasionally to show that you are the dominant person in the conversation.
- Speak succinctly. Don’t ramble on, over-explain or attempt to justify your ideas or decisions. Be direct, concise and decisive to prove that you are sure of yourself.
— Adapted from “How to Project Power,” Malia Wollan, The New York Times, www.nytimes.com.