What's Your Nonverbal Communication Saying? - Black Enterprise

What’s Your Nonverbal Communication Saying?

Beware of crossed arms. They can signal that you're closed off to communication.

Your nonverbal communications speaks louder than your words. “Over 90% of our communication is nonverbal,” says Rachel Boone, president and founder of Solutions Life Coaching, a firm that provides individuals and companies with personal and professional development. Boone offers a few tips how to improve nonverbal communication in preparation for an interview.

  1. Look Them in the Eyes. Boone says, “Eye contact is big. It shows trust, increases your creditability and shows confidence in yourself and your work. Whenever you avoid eye contact it can be seen as being disinterested in what the other person has to say.” If making eye contact makes you feel uncomfortable, Boone advises that you focus instead on the triangle between the eyes. It gives the illusion that you are making eye contact.
  2. Do a Test Run. Practice before your interview. Use the video mechanism on your phone and ask a friend to tape a mock interview of you or stand in front of a mirror. This will gauge your performance and help you identify weak areas in your delivery, which should include why they should hire you.
  3. Be Punctual. Time is an important nonverbal that speaks volumes without saying a word. If you show up late for an interview it says that you will show up late for work or hand in work late. Map out the route in advance, and leave early to allow for possible delays.
  4. Mind Your Appearance. Your clothing and accessories are objects that communicate who you are nonverbally. Inappropriate clothing can turn many interviewers off without you saying a word. Dress appropriately for the work environment.  Also avoid playing with accessories like earrings or necklaces. It sends the impression that you are nervous or bored with the conversation.