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How to show you are an online leader

How to show you are an online leader

Business | Artículo
  • Visitas
    1400
  • Julio 2020
  • Fecha de publicación
  • Julio 2020
  • Business
  • Artículo
Karyn Elizabeth Suárez

Karyn Elizabeth Suárez

Directora del IMBA. Empresaria; coach ejecutiva de oratoria; especialista en comunicación en español e inglés (bilingüe). Miembro de NSA (National Speakers Association); Toastmasters International. Coach de ACA (American Coaching Association).

What is the definition of leadership today? What does it mean to be a leader in these times of the coronavirus? How can we learn to be leaders if we are working from home and cannot interact with others directly?

Leadership is the ability to influence people, to motivate, to bring about change, and to enable others to achieve a common goal. Our online performance as leaders is more compromised now that we are working telematically. We meet through Zoom and other applications with our employees, customers, suppliers or teachers, and it is difficult for us to make an impact that perhaps in person would be much more natural.

However, now more than ever our communication is THE key to achieving a strong and inspiring presence with our words and gestures. The first requirement to demonstrate leadership is the proper use of our voice or our parallax, because our voice is one of the most powerful tools we have.

Paralanguage is defined as the variation of our pitch, intonation, speed and diction when speaking. An expressive voice and the ability to introduce variations and different cadences allows us to speak with clarity and authority, and adds "colour" to online meetings and speeches.

However, now more than ever our communication is the key to achieving a strong and inspiring presence with our words and gestures. The first requirement to demonstrate leadership is the proper use of our voice or our parallax, because our voice is one of the most powerful tools we have.

Paralanguage is defined as the variation of our pitch, intonation, speed and diction when speaking. An expressive voice and the ability to introduce variations and different cadences allows us to speak with clarity and authority, and adds "colour" to online meetings and speeches.

Trust is fundamental. We have to think about what message we are sending. Do we want to call our partners to take action? What is our ultimate message or conclusion? We have to be very clear and concise with what we want to convey. A leader communicates his message verbally with confidence, authenticity and sometimes with a little humour, and wins over the audience with his charisma.

Non-verbal communication is not only transmitted with words, but also through gestures and body movements such as postures, looks, our appearance, the way we sit or even walk. Experts say that non-verbal communication is 55% of our communication.

So how can it influence us if we communicate digitally and only our upper body is visible? Now more than ever, our online communication matters and a lot. Eye contact is critical: we must look at the camera and not at the screen when we lead a meeting. Our smile must be that authentic smile that you can see the crow's feet in our expression and our posture, straight and upright to show that we are attentive and not looking at the mobile or distracted by being in the home office. Get ready for your online meeting, look impeccable as a leader and that will make others notice your effort and professionalism.

Another important aspect is knowing how to motivate our employees and for this it is essential to recognize their achievements. We have to consider that it has been quite difficult to work remotely from home, since each person's situation is different. Some workers have children at home, many distractions and multitasking aspects that influence their concentration and performance. Showing empathy, flexibility and understanding can help strengthen leadership on the job. A good leader is one who appreciates his or her employees, gives them recognition when they deserve it, doesn't just highlight their failures and offers constructive advice to improve the worker or the team.

These are trying times and the business world is changing. We might think that video conferencing does not demand the level of professionalism required in an in-person interview or a meeting with a client, but the visual impact remains the same.

Improving our verbal and non-verbal communication, showing empathy and flexibility and giving constructive advice will help us to strengthen our leadership in the work environment. We have to face the new reality and try to improve our training and skills, to motivate others online and not just in person, because great leaders do not blame the tools they use, but work to refine them.

  • Fecha de publicación
  • Julio 2020
  • Business
  • Artículo
  • Autor

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