Becoming a more likable and charismatic person can advance your career and your business in ways that technical skills and intelligence alone cannot. Everyone has the ability to be likable, but like any other skill, charisma needs to be honed.
Adopting the traits of likable people helped me to produce more sales, create a better culture and establish a stronger network.
Becoming more charismatic isn't about tactics and tricks. It's about authenticity and awareness. Here are six ways to become a more charismatic and likable leader.
Make good conversation
Charismatic people are masters at conversation and can execute underrated skills that build meaningful relationships. With practice, you can too.
Here are some basic conversational skills you can master:
Give sincere compliments
A well-placed compliment can make someone's day. Likable people are quick to offer one, and, more importantly, they're sincere.
If you struggle with giving compliments, you likely struggle with receiving them. First, learn to receive a compliment gracefully. Then learn to give one sincerely. Start by specifically thanking people. Then shift to offering honest praise of a recent accomplishment or personal trait. Remember, a compliment should never be dishonest or forced, but specific and sincere.
Start with a smile. It not only welcomes others, but makes a positive and lasting impression. People are attracted to happiness, which is exactly what a smile portrays.
If smiling doesn't come naturally, fake it till you make it. Research shows that if you flex your muscles into a smile, a happier mood will follow.
This is so important it needs its own section. No one likes being interrupted. Interruptions can kill an enjoyable conversation, stopping the free flow of conversation and making others defensive.
Stop interrupting and you'll find that others will welcome the opportunity to speak with you. They'll also be more receptive and trusting of what you have to say.
If you struggle with interrupting, try biting your tongue for three seconds. Make sure the other person is finished speaking before you chime in.
Maintain good manners
Manners are more important now than ever. Even a simple "please" and "thank you" can go a long way in setting you apart.
This is especially true if you're a millennial looking to stand out from the crowd.
Send thank-you notes. Hold doors open. Chew with your mouth closed. Be on time. Good manners will keep you looking and acting your best.
Think of how great it feels when someone does something nice for you. Likable people find ways to be generous, and for good reason. Doing something nice for someone else feels amazing. Also, when you give to others, often they give back to you, or better yet, to someone else, creating a chain reaction of generosity.
Find ways to be more generous. Write a note of praise or appreciation. Leave a nice tip for a server. Do someone a favor or help with a task. Such generosity can speak volumes.
Putting it together
Implement these tips and you will immediately make your social interactions more enjoyable. But don't fake it. People can detect insincerity a mile away.
Practice one tip until it becomes habit. Then move to the next. Also, do yourself a favor and read "How to Win Friends and Influence People" by Dale Carnegie. I've read it 14 times and it's been instrumental to my success.
Treat people how you want to be treated and abundance and affection will come back to you. Likable people know this--that's part of what makes them so likable.