Monika Matschnig: How body language influences your effect

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Monika Matschnig: How body language influences your effect

Imagine shaking hands with someone at a business meeting. Can you imagine what your hand position looks like? Is the back of your hand facing up or down? The position of your hand says a lot about your effect: If the back of your hand is facing up, you are the dominant part. If, on the other hand, it is pointing downwards, your counterpart is very likely to take the dominant role. Your body language and your ability to make an impact are strongly connected.

The good news is that both can be trained. Every negative trait that you have acquired over time and that reduces your ability to be effective can be discarded. Monika Matschnig: "Some body language experts tell you what you shouldn't do. But then people put their focus only on their posture, gestures and facial expressions. That doesn't work. The point is to tell people what to do instead - and to do it in a way that fits their personality type."

Consciously adapt body language

And not only that: You can also adapt body language so that it radiates exactly which business type you embody. Are you the easy-going boss within a flat hierarchy, who is on first-name terms with his employees and likes to invite them for a beer after work? Or do you work in a rather conservative company that prescribes clear hierarchies? Your company, your position and many other factors determine which body language and which effect you should adopt.

But some points almost always overlap. Or to put it another way: there are aspects of external impact that every manager, every entrepreneur and every self-employed person should master. Monika Matschnig gives an example: "It doesn't necessarily matter what you say, but above all how you say something. The how is much more decisive than the what. Because the best products, services or competencies won't be noticed if you don't manage to come across as good."

Acting effectively

This is mainly because your customers, business partners or employees trust your body more than your words. Monika Matschnig: "Effectiveness is stronger than expertise. It is a misconception that the matter is in the foreground. Numbers, data and facts are important, but it's more about how you communicate that content effectively."

And how does that happen? For example, the use of images and stories works particularly well. Personal anecdotes, elements of storytelling and vivid examples usually arouse great interest among listeners. The expert reveals: "Underline what you are saying with your body and put emotion into your words and gestures. Practice this over and over again. Impact competence is the quality criterion of the future!"

transport energy

Of course, we also have a few concrete tips for your body language and your effectiveness in everyday business. Monika Matschnig: "The important thing is to stand correctly. It sounds banal, but ask yourself the objective question of what your optimal starting position looks like. A little tip: Stand with both feet firmly on the ground. And now build up energy in your body and transport it."

You can also influence the position of your hands with a little practice. Monika Matschnig: "How do you normally hold them when you talk to someone? The first step is to become aware of your current behavior." And now put your focus on your gestures and observe how your counterpart reacts to them. For example, open palms symbolize openness and trust. Try it out and within a short time you will notice that your customers, partners or employees react much more positively to you. We wish you a lot of fun and good luck!

Reviewed by Dr. med. Stefan Frädrich

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