Six Things Extremely Likeable People Do!
When you meet someone, after you’ve already asked “How are you?” “What do you do?” you’re out of things to say. You are not good at small talk, and those can be a tough five minute to endure. This is especially awkward during interviews. At Boardwalk, we are currently hiring for an entry-level position, and we’d like to give everyone a few tips on how to be a more likeable person!
Lose the power pose.
I know, your parents taught you to stand tall, square your shoulders, stride purposefully forward, drop your voice a couple of registers, and shake hands with a firm grip.
It’s great to display nonverbal self-confidence, but go too far and it seems like you’re trying to establish your importance. That makes the “meeting” seem like it’s more about you than it is the other person–and no one likes that.
Next time you meet someone, relax, step forward, tilt your head towards them slightly, smile, and show that you’re the one who is honored by the introduction–not them.
Embrace the power of touch.
Touch can influence behavior, increase the chances of compliance, make the person doing the touching seem more attractive and friendly.
Go easy, of course: Pat the other person lightly on the upper arm or shoulder. Make it casual and nonthreatening.
Try this: The next time you walk up behind a person you know, touch them lightly on the shoulder as you go by. I guarantee you’ll feel like a more genuine greeting was exchanged.
Touch breaks down natural barriers and decreases the real and perceived distance between you and the other person–a key component in liking and in being liked.
Whip out your social jiu-jitsu.
You meet someone. You talk for 15 minutes. You walk away thinking, “Wow, we just had a great conversation. She is awesome.”
Then, when you think about it later, you realize you didn’t learn a thing about the other person.
Remarkably likeable people are masters at Social Jiu-Jitsu, the ancient art of getting you to talk about yourself without you ever knowing it happened.
Social jiu-jitsu is easy. Just ask the right questions. Stay open-ended and allow room for description and introspection. Ask how, or why, or who.
As soon as you learn a little about someone, ask how they did it. Or why they did it. Or what they liked about it, or what they learned from it, or what you should do if you’re in a similar situation.
No one gets too much recognition. Asking the right questions implicitly shows you respect another person’s opinion–and, by extension, the person.
Everyone is better than you at something. Let them be better than you.
Don’t try to win the “getting to know someone” competition. Try to lose. Be complimentary. Be impressed. Admit a failing or a weakness.
You don’t have to disclose your darkest secrets. If the other person says, “We just purchased a larger facility,” say, “That’s awesome. I have to admit I’m jealous. We’ve wanted to move for a couple years but haven’t been able to put together the financing. How did you pull it off?”
Don’t be afraid to show a little vulnerability. People may be (momentarily) impressed by the artificial, but people sincerely like the genuine.
Be the real you. People will like the real you.
Ask for nothing.
You know the moment: You’re having a great conversation, you’re finding things in common… and then bam! Someone plays the networking card, and everything about your interaction changes.
Put away the hard-charging, goal-oriented, always-on kinda persona. If you have to ask for something, find a way to help the other person, then ask if you can.
Remarkably likeable people focus on what they can do for you–not for themselves.
“Nice to meet you,” you say, nodding once as you part. That’s the standard move, one that is instantly forgettable.
Instead go back to the beginning. Shake hands again. Use your free hand to gently touch the other person’s forearm or shoulder. Say, “I am really glad I met you.” Or say, “You know, I really enjoyed talking with you.” Smile: Not that insincere salesperson smile that goes with, “Have a nice day!” but a genuine, appreciative smile.
Making a great first impression is important, but so is making a great last impression.
Accept that it isn’t easy.
All this sounds simple, right? It is. But it’s not easy, especially if you’re shy. The standard, power pose, “Hello, how are you, good to meet you, good seeing you,” shuffle feels a lot safer.
But it won’t make people like you.
So accept it’s hard. Accept that being a little more deferential, a little more genuine, a little more complimentary and a little more vulnerable means putting yourself out there. Accept that at first it will feel risky.
But don’t worry: When you help people feel a little better about themselves–which is reason enough–they’ll like you for it.
And you’ll like yourself a little more, too.
So I hope that helped! Now, put those skills to the test! Get out there are meet new people! Also, if you’re interested in a business opportunity in the Indianapolis area, give me a call or shoot me an email with your resume attached. I’d love to talk to you more about the opportunity and let you put your new skills to the test!