Ladies, your success in the working world boils down to one thing: Good body language. Psychologists say it doesn’t matter if you have an MBA or you’re the hardest worker at the company. If you don’t give off a strong and powerful image, you’ll never be taken seriously or seen as a leader.
Harvard Business School professor Dr. Amy Cuddy says that women notoriously have weak body language. At a young age, they’re wired to be ladylike, crossing their legs to appear smaller, which automatically gives off a weak vibe. So ladies, here are a few major body language moves experts suggest ditching:
First: Tilting your head as a sign of listening. It’s often misinterpreted as submission or flirting.
Then, don’t fold your hands on your lap. It signals untrustworthiness and dates back to ancient times when men would show their palms to literally show they were unarmed.
Also go easy on the smiling. While it seems like you’re being enthusiastic, having a permanent smile in the working world often comes across as a sign that you’re not serious.
And the next time you’re in a conference room meeting, look at how the men behave versus the women. Men spread out their papers, lean back in their chairs, and cross their ankles over their knees. All are open body language movements that show confidence and dominance. Women in meetings tend to stack their papers neatly and tuck themselves under the table. They also speak less frequently and use more submissive language like “I’m sorry, could you repeat that” or “This is just a thought, but...” But saying “I’m sorry” when there’s nothing to be forgiven is a sign of weakness. And when you qualify your ideas with “It’s just a thought” – you minimize anything that comes next.