As an agent, you are often called upon to give presentations to your clients, colleagues, and community members.  Make the most of those presentations by always being aware of your audience.  Are they nodding off, looking bored, or glued to their phones instead of being glued to you?

Put some animation and engagement into your words by adding welcoming, reinforcing hand gestures to your content.  The more effective your hand gestures, the more attentive your audience.

Here are some hand gestures to rehearse while rehearsing your presentation:

  1.  Keeping your palms up instead of down invites your audience to feel comfortable. Research shows that 84% of audiences respond positively to speakers who use a palms up gesture with their hands rather than to just 52% when speakers use a palms down gesture.  Palms up implies honesty whereas palms down implies submissiveness.
  2. Putting your hands together chest high in a steeply position reassures audiences/listeners that you as the speaker are confident in the words and message you are delivering.  Hand wringing, on the other hand, communicates nervousness, uncertainty and fidgetiness.  Steve Jobs often used hand steeply gestures when switching topics.
  3. President Donald Trump is the master of the OK gesture.  Instead of pointing to emphasis his position, he squeezes his index finger against the thumb as a non-verbal cue to underline his authority, focus and goal orientation.  Pointing, instead, comes across as punitive, aggressive, rude.
  4. President Barrack Obama is the master of the side-palm gesture.  Holding out his hand in a handshake position non-verbally communicates to his audience that he’s reaching out to them.  Nine times out of ten, that audience will want to meet him half way.
  5. Rather than putting your hands on your hips or joining them together behind your back, simply let your arms hang naturally at your side.  That way, your hands will be ready to use when you want to use appropriate hand gestures and you won’t appear to be scolding them as children (hands on hip position) or overly rigid or awkward (hands behind your back position).

The obvious take-away here is that having a good speech is not enough to engage your audience. Communicating a good speech to your audience with effective hand gestures is.




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