November 15, 2013

How you present yourself is in the details



Did you brush your teeth today? Did you brush your hair? If you were going to work or to a meeting, did you give some thought to your clothing choices (of course, you may be sitting at your computer in your pajamas with no outside appointments today, and if so, I understand).

Typically, we pay attention to how we present ourselves in the world. We pay attention to our appearance, our behavior, our demeanor. When clients come to me for coaching, they are looking to improve their stage presence and also how they present their message to their audience.

But how you present yourself is not just in the big public things we do every day. It's also in the minutiae of how you communicate through e-mail and other mediums. It's how your website and social media activities present you. And it's how you leave voice mail messages for people you want to call you back.

Last week, there was an e-mail in my inbox with the subject line, "Hello." Looks like spam, right? Especially since the e-mail right after it had the same subject line (with a comma after "hello") and was indeed spam. However, something made me decide to open this message, and it happened to be from someone wanting to talk to me about coaching.

I came *thisclose* to junking that e-mail, just because of the subject line. Want to write a quick subject line to me? Write "Coaching." Write "Consultation." Write "Speaking." Write SOMETHING that indicates why you are contacting me. "Hello?" I honestly don't know why I opened this one, but I did, and this person got lucky that her e-mail wasn't sent to spam. How many others have dumped her messages?

This is just one example of how not paying attention to the details of communication will get you into trouble. I also get a lot of poorly-written e-mails, some of which I literally cannot understand and have to write back asking for clarification. Are they trying to sell me something, partner with me, partake of my services? I sometimes can't even tell.

Presenting yourself to the world is in the details of communication. You look great on the outside, but you can't compose a clear e-mail or an understandable voice mail, or write a simple report? It's going to be a problem. Pay attention. And get help.

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Are you an entrepreneur or professional who's looking for better results from your speaking? Are you hoping to build credibility and visibility for your business or cause? Tired of just "getting by" and ready to deliver truly engaging and powerful presentation? Click here to fill out my consultation questionnaire and we'll schedule a time to talk!

2 comments. Please add yours! :

Elizabeth Scala said...

Great post, Lisa! This must be a 'sign'. I read another article about presenting self in business. I had a talk about it with my online business manager. And now reading this- well, your opening at least with how we show up to work in the morning- reminded me that presentation is hugely represented in success! Great article, and wow! Good thing you did read that email. Thanks for the reminder to be clear with my communication. Elizabeth

Lisa Braithwaite said...

Thanks for reading, Liz, and I'm glad you were motivated by the post!

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