Here’s a question – Who is the person at workplace or in your industry that you admire the most? Here’s another question – Does that person’s body language have anything to do with it? Chances are that you are saying yes in your head.
That’s the thing about body language and posture. It is believed that over 90% of people’s judgments are based on non-verbal communication. As a manager, the way you present and conduct yourself will have a significant impact on how your colleagues and clients view you. There is a direct relation between a person’s upright posture and success. Don’t believe me? Well here’s proof.
A change in hormones
The way we position ourselves can determine our hormone levels. According to Amy Cuddy, a social science researcher at Harvard University, there is clear evidence that posture influences our hormones, especially testosterone and cortisol. As you may already know, testosterone is the hormone that is related to power and confidence, while the stress hormone cortisol is equated with decreased confidence levels. Something as simple as sitting upright and incorporating power poses can increase testosterone levels in the body, thus making you more confident and helping you become a better, more influential manager.
Amy Cuddy did this remarkable study which confirms that posing in high power nonverbal displays causes neuroendocrine and behavioral changes for human beings. High-power posers experience elevations in testosterone and decrease in cortisol. A good posture increases feelings of power and tolerance for risk.
Not just this, there have been studies that show a direct correlation between an upright power posture and a decline in anxiety and depression. A power posture has the ability to influence the emotional state of people who suffer from depression.
Change in tonality
A change in posture can also have an impact on your voice. Sitting or standing with your head and neck rounded can lead to tension in the voice box, restricting the ability to speak clearly. And we all know the effects a good voice can have on engaging those we speak to. An improper posture can even make your voice tone shaky, and affect breathing. By adopting an upright posture, you can speak more clearly and confidently, and this will have a great impact on your management skills, creating more impact on your peers.
Influence and inspire
With great power comes great responsibility and the job of being a manager is challenging. From setting an example, to constantly helping your team grow and develop, it requires you to exude confidence and leadership qualities. A person with slumped shoulders automatically comes across as bored, dull and unimpressive. Managers need to embody characteristics that make other people feel inspired by. Like world leaders who never slouch during a speech, stand up tall and who voice their case. These are all people who radiate confidence and panache, and managers need to adopt them if they want to truly influence people.
Just remember – no one wants to take orders from someone with a shaky voice, or a slouched body language. Start practicing a good posture and see the difference for yourself. Whether you are sitting or standing, make sure you make yourself aware of your posture and start investing your time in maintaining a good one.