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Are YOU a WALKING Health HAZARD?

 In Actors, Body language, Delivery, Facial expression, Feedback, Learning from Luminaries, Luminary, Meetings, Networking, News, Owning space, The Winning Voice, Video, Voice, What not to do

‘Among the positive and negative Primacy Effect factors that, in my experience, interviewers, recruitment specialists and headhunters as well as clients have identified are set out in the list below.

Many of these points are so obvious that they seem hardly worth mentioning. Indeed, one critic of a previous book of mine on personal impact matters wrote that he did not need Michael Shea to tell him to dry his palms and brush the dandruff from his shoulders before an interview.

He was wrong.

Many people do need just that (I met my journalist critic much later. He was a walking health hazard and worked from home since colleagues could not stand working beside him)’.

This is a passage from the book, The Primacy Effect by Michael Shea.

This positive and negative factors are:

(10) POSITIVE………………..(1)NEGATIVE

Speaks clearly………………………..Mutters

Stands tall…………………………….Slouches

Confident……………………………..Diffident

Firm handshake……………………Wet handshake

Good eyelock………………………..Shifty-eyed. Never looked at us

Motivated…………………………….Didn’t know what he/she wanted

Took the lead……………………….Always had to be prompted

Well groomed………………………Scruffy

Intelligently curious……………..Disinterested

Well dressed………………………..Carelessly dressed

Agreeable……………………………Surly

I once asked a client to rate himself on the list of factors on a 10-1 scale. That is, the words in the left column would be a 10 rating. The word on the right a 1 rating. For the Speaks clearly vs Mutters factor my client gave himself an (8). His boss gave him a (4). This was a surprise to my client.

Particularly on entry to a room or a video meeting the factors are particularly important.

Facial expression is extremely important.

As Eric Kandel maintains in his excellent book, The Age of Insight.

‘Faces are the most informative stimuli we ever perceive: Even a split second glimpse of a person’s face tells us their identity, sex, mood, age, mood, age, race and direction of attention.

Own the Conversation

Let me suggest you do this in the next seven days

  1. Rate yourself on the factors using the 10-1 rating system. (I understand in these COVID-19 times your rating your handshake may be difficult).
  2. Give the factors to a trusted person – without letting them see your rating – and ask them to rate you on the factors.
  3. Compare yours and the trusted person’s ratings.
  4. If there is a discrepancy in ratings, seek to understand the reason by discussing the rating with the person.
  5. If appropriate, start changing your behaviour, dress etc, so you’re perceived, as you want to be perceived.

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p.s. here is a post with advice on creating presentations from luminary American film director and producer David Fincher

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