There is a great saying by Ralph Waldo Emerson, “Who you are speaks so loudly, I can’t hear what you are saying.”  As a leader, this is probably magnified 10x.

From the moment you enter the room, your team is calibrating against your energetic presence. Is your energy high? Do you seem distracted? Are you focused inwardly or toward the team? Is your body language screaming something different from your words?

Are you aware enough to realize when you are struggling? Have you found yourself explaining you have a sick child that kept you up most of the night before you begin the meeting? Can you also become aware of even more subtle communication?

The person who leads the meeting sets the tone. Each meeting is an opportunity for greatness, for a bigger outcome than anyone expected. People could begin to look forward to the meetings you lead.

How would you do that?  First, you must be clear on the desired outcome of the meeting. Set your intention. Then, calibrate your energy accordingly. Say, it is a budget meeting and you need to communicate a reduction of force. This will not be a joyful interaction. Your desired outcome might be that the team understands why and buys into the necessary actions. Further, that they will be part of the solution and stand by the decisions in conversations going forward outside the meeting room.

You would want your energy in that situation to be calm, reassuring, centered and open. You would be factual. You are not there to sell, you are there to explain. You would want to listen to how this affects their ability to perform while staying focused on the needed outcome. Preparing your message and your energy will be critical for a successful outcome.

This week, pick one meeting or encounter and prepare ahead. Your message is important, but how you set your intention and hold your energy, may be even more valuable to your communication.

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