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Executive Presence : How To Develop & Master It

Executive Presence

What Is Executive Presence, Why Do You Need It, and How Do You Get It?

Executive PresenceExecutive Presence : “Presence of the CEO!” Many people struggle to understand this term, which is typically wrapped in mystery and murmured as if it were something magical.

Executive presence is necessary, but it does not have to be enigmatic.

Most significantly, executive presence is a talent, not a personality attribute, which means it can be developed.

Here’s a simple breakdown of executive presence: what it is, why you need it, and how to acquire it.

What Is Executive Presence, and What Does It Mean?

In its most basic form, executive presence is about your ability to inspire confidence in others — in your subordinates that you’re the leader they want to follow, in your peers that you’re capable and reliable, and, most importantly, in senior leaders that you have the potential to achieve great things.

What Are the Benefits of Executive Presence?

Whether or whether you are granted access to opportunities is determined by your executive presence.

“All the crucial choices about you will be made when you’re not in the room,” says a leadership adage.

That is correct. You won’t be in the room when a major decision is made, a promotion to a key position is given, or a high-profile project is assigned.

The opportunities you gain access to are determined by the level of trust you have instilled in decision-makers.

The more vital the opportunity, the more crucial executive presence becomes.

Seven Key Steps to Increasing Your Executive Presence

Some people are naturally more gifted at executive presence than others, just as they are with any other skill.

With attention and effort, though, anyone can improve their executive presence.

And, probably most crucially, the more senior you become, the more executive presence you’ll need, therefore everyone should work on enhancing their executive presence on a regular basis.

Here are seven crucial steps to help you create and improve your own:

1. Have a clear vision and be able to convey it effectively. Having a compelling vision—a well-conceived picture of what you’re aiming to achieve—is one of the most crucial aspects of inspiring confidence.

It should be scaled appropriately for your level of seniority, and you should be able to effectively express your vision in any situation, whether it’s a three-minute elevator ride with a senior executive, an offsite with your team, or a dinner with key stakeholders.

A strong, well-articulated vision is ultimately what distinguishes you, and it’s a great weapon for instilling confidence.

2. Recognize how people perceive you. Executives with strong presence are acutely aware of how others see them.

This is critical because, as you rise through the ranks and your sphere of influence widens, you become more reliant on others for your efficacy.

And, before you can acquire access to the most senior positions, decision makers need to know that you can handle yourself in a variety of situations.

Learn how people see you and what they think of you. Seek advice from mentors and solicit input from superiors, peers, and subordinates. Include folks who have seen you in a variety of settings.

3. Improve your communication abilities. Communication is at the heart of good leadership, and persons with strong executive presence are effective communicators.

Obtain feedback on your communication and devote time to improving your communication abilities. You must be an effective communicator in all situations and across all mediums, including in-person, written, and virtual communication.

4. Improve your listening skills. One of the most important communication skills is the capacity to listen, which many people overlook.

People who have a strong executive presence are terrific listeners. They pay complete attention, ask excellent questions, and listen to engage others and explore key concepts.

Another advantage is that great listening indicates self-confidence, which is another important aspect of executive presence.

5. Develop your political expertise and expand your network. Organizational politics are neither a good nor a bad thing for those with extraordinary executive presence.

They recognise that businesses are made up of intricate relationships, and that there will be differences of opinion and opposing objectives from time to time.

Organizational politics is the inherent dynamic that occurs when people collaborate.

People with a strong executive presence excel at creating a network of relationships and gaining the political savvy necessary to influence difficult situations in a positive manner.

6. Develop the ability to work well under duress. When the stakes are great, how do you act?

Do you ever come across as rushed, agitated, or overworked? Do you lose your cool easily or have a reputation for being irritable?

Many people make the mistake of thinking that seeming franticly busy demonstrates their importance to the company.

It doesn’t; it simply signals that they’re overworked and can’t be trusted with any further responsibilities.

Nobody wants to witness a leader who is stressed out. Executive presence is defined as being calm, even-keeled, composed, well-prepared, and in command at all times.

This gives them the assurance that they’re capable of taking on even more.

7. Make sure your physical appearance isn’t a hindrance. It’s possible that your kindergarten teacher told you that neatness is important.

That is correct. The way you look provides a first impression, and first impressions are powerful, whether conscious or subconscious.

You want to make sure that your initial impression leaves a positive impression.

That doesn’t imply you should aspire to look like a model. Rather, ensure that your appearance is appropriate for the setting and corporate culture, as well as comparable to those at your level.

Pay close attention to your wardrobe, tailoring, and grooming to ensure that nothing about your look detracts from the impression you want to make.

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