If you have the whole skill set necessary for a specific leadership position and you are still not sitting on that chair, the reason might very well be:

You talk too much.

Most probably, you make one or more of the following three mistakes:

  1. you repeat yourself – but not in a “adding-up to the argument” but in a pure repetitive way
  2. you justify your arguments
  3. you use three words where one is enough

AND: you move too much while talking.

There is only one reason for this behavior: insecurity. Whether it is factual insecurity regarding the topic or emotional insecurity concerning your relationships, it boils down to that one word.

An important finding

The most surprising learning for the participants in a recent two-day training on Non-Verbal Communication in Negotiation was: the less I move, the less I talk the more power I exert.

NO, this is not an intrinsic advantage for introverts. If you lack PRESENCE, saying nothing and moving hardly, only translates to “I have nothing to say because I don’t know or because I’m afraid to talk.” The result is: you become invisible.

But IF you are fully PRESENT – with mind and body – nothing is more powerful than a few words and moves breaking your prevailing silence.

The Exercise

The exercise seems futile but the results will be groundbreaking: the next time you meet up with somebody try to talk and use non-verbal elements only when it is necessary. The rest of the time keep rather neutral (no excitement nor boredom!) eye contact and your body in a calm, relaxed and poised posture. Keep your mind from wandering; stay right there with that person. Whether you sit or stand is not important. Observe what happens.


This post is also available in: German