You know, sometimes you really can’t see the forest for the trees.
You may just be too close to recognize some things about yourself that are apparent to others. So for this exercise you need a trusted friend, an unbiased observer or one who can be very honestly objective.
When we talk about your “personal presentation” that is– How do you come across? What image do you convey? Is it the image that you intended? At the very least you want to convey the three C’s – capable, competent and confident; and at best you want to convey excellence.
Ask your trusted friend how you’re rating. Are there some things to which they suggest you should pay attention? Have they noticed some particular habit you have that you may want to adjust? I know, I know…you could be opening yourself up for some ugly ridicule.
They may point out something that you agree you should change or something that you decide you should not change. They may point out something you do that you mistakenly thought was effective. They may have some business wisdom that you should take advantage of.
It could be something as simple as you laugh too loud during meetings. Your handshake is limp. You should reconsider wearing a particular suit that you thought made you look sharp.
Yes. I know this is getting a little silly but, you’d be surprised at the difference a small piece of advice like that can make.
My husband informed me that I make too many extraneous little noises while speaking on the phone. WHAT?! Since it was my husband, first I got offended. “I’m just more demonstrative, that’s all.” Then I thought that maybe I should listen to him. So I began to monitor myself. I actually taped my end of a phone conversation. Yep. He was right. I was doing exactly what he said. As I listened to the person on the other end of the call, I continually sprinkled in “hmmms, ahhhs, ooohsss, and tschs,” and all kinds of little unnecessary noises. I decided to listen more quietly. It seemed more courteous and more professional on the business side.
That’s a perfect example of something that I needed to know, and when I was made aware, I felt changing it was better. Who knows? Your next presentation may just be a real winner because you did a check up and you had help.