Dr. Carol Kinsey Goman has made a career on exploring the connections between leadership and nonverbal communicationaka body language. Citing studies conducted by top universities, she recently compiled a list of simple adjustments that could, hypothetically, change the course of your career.
Some of Gomans tips come down to common sense: Good posture, for instance, improves self-confidence and in turn, the way others perceive you. (Its not just about standing up straight, either: New York Magazines Everything Guide to Posture explores four unique power poses that prepare you for the challenge at-hand with instant self-confidence and even physiological transformation.) Also, a firm handshake never gets old.
Others points are totally unexpected, like the notion that holding a warm beverage rather than a cold one can make you come across as more trusting (or easily manipulated, depending on how you look at it). So if youre courting a potential client, bring coffee; if youre negotiating a raise, stick to ice-cold H2O.
And if you check emails as often as we do, this nugget will really resonate: In one study, subjects asked to furrow their brows while checking emails reported interpreting messages with an angry tone, versus those who read with relaxed facial expressions. In other words, you could be injecting negativity into your work communications by simply looking askance at your screen. (Good thing we keep mirrors on hand here at HQ.)
Check out Fast Company for the full list of tips.