Why Executive Presence Increases Your Value as a Leader

Executive presence is the je ne sais quoi of the business world. If you do have it, it is obvious to everyone around you. If you don’t have it, it is just as obvious but difficult to cultivate. Executive presence has been described as the ability to establish yourself as a leader among others, even when there is no formal hierarchy. Those that have an executive presence are often the leader of the pack whether at work or with friends and family. It is the natural leadership and way of relating to others that makes them want to follow you. If you have ever been told that you lack executive presence, it can be hard to know how to improve so that you can increase your value as a leader.   Components of executive presence Executive presence boils down to how other people perceive you. Your clothes, speech, attitude, and communication skills are all part of what other people think about you. Women, especially, have to be intentional and precise about their persona in order to achieve their goals. How you relate to others is a big part of executive presence. Taking time to listen to your team will boost their confidence in you and help them to see you as a leader that they want to follow, not a “boss” that they secretly hope will fail.   Why it matters Executive presence is the key to being a dynamic leader that people want to be around and listen to. Executive presence opens up better career opportunities because you become a valuable asset to your company as well as others where you could get job offers. It gives you more influence in business relationships. When you know how to lead your own team, you can easily work with people outside your organization as well.   How to cultivate executive presence If you want to climb the ladder, you need to start working on your executive presence. Here are some practical ways to get started:   -Find role models Think about someone that you admire who is a confident and strong leader. You may relate to a TV personality or a US president or even a mentor. Finding someone who is better than you at leading that you can look up to is a must. Without challenging yourself, you will not grow.   -Evaluate yourself Assess all the aspects of your executive presence and then ask some trusted friends or colleagues to give you feedback. Take their opinions without becoming defensive or trying to explain yourself. It can be tough to hear honest feedback like that, but it will help you grow exponentially.