Nonverbal cues that will help your career

Body language is important.No matter your career path, whether you want to go into medical assisting or would prefer a job in pharmacy technology, the nonverbal cues that you give will have an impact on your success. Also known as body language, nonverbal cues can often be just as impactful or even more so than the words that actually come out of your mouth.1 If you want to display confidence and express yourself in a way that will lead to positive outcomes at work and in life,2 incorporate these nonverbal cues into your persona:

Eye contact

When trying to establish a connection with a co-worker or manager, eye contact is key. Maintaining eye contact not only shows that you are engaged and interested in the conversation, but also conveys a sense of warmth. You don’t want to stare – that can become creepy rather quickly¬†– but it’s a good idea to maintain eye contact for two or three seconds before directing your attention elsewhere.3

Handshake

A quality handshake is particularly important to perfect prior to interviewing for a job, and it’s a skill that will help you throughout your career. If your handshake is too weak or delicate, it may be interpreted as incompetence. Instead, stand with your body square to the other person, smile (making¬†eye contact!), and give him or her a firm handshake – it will show that you’re outgoing and confident.4

Stay still

While you certainly don’t want to emulate a statue, constantly fidgeting while at work can be distracting. If you’re the type of person who tends to play with her hair when she’s nervous, pin it back for the big meeting. If you find that you often fiddle with your scrubs, clasp your hands in front of you while talking with a manager so you’re not tempted.5

1 Smith, Jacquelyn, Forbes, ’10 Nonverbal Cues that convey Confidence at Work,’ March 11, 2013 – http://www.forbes.com/sites/jacquelynsmith/2013/03/11/10-nonverbal-cues-that-convey-confidence-at-work/
2 Huntington, Marie, The Houston Chronicle, ‘How Nonverbal Communication Can Help in the Workplace,’ 2013 – http://smallbusiness.chron.com/nonverbal-communication-can-workplace-21523.html
3 Smith, Jacquelyn, Forbes, ’10 Nonverbal Cues that convey Confidence at Work,’ March 11, 2013 – http://www.forbes.com/sites/jacquelynsmith/2013/03/11/10-nonverbal-cues-that-convey-confidence-at-work/
4 USA Today College, ‘4 Nonverbal ways to shine in the workplace,’ June 21, 2013 – http://www.usatodayeducate.com/staging/index.php/career/4-nonverbal-ways-to-shine-in-the-workplace
5 USA Today College, ‘4 Nonverbal ways to shine in the workplace,’ June 21, 2013 – http://www.usatodayeducate.com/staging/index.php/career/4-nonverbal-ways-to-shine-in-the-workplace