When organizations are looking to hire new management or promote employees from within to higher up positions, executive presence is a must-have personality trait.
Executive presence can help inspire others while increasing productivity in the workplace.
Companies are looking for candidates who display confidence and professionalism when managing employees. It’s an incredibly valuable quality to have in leadership positions.
But, how do executives build their strong presence?
Executive presence isn’t a character trait that comes naturally to many working professionals, but can be developed through experience, understanding, and hard work.
Here are some proven steps to build an executive presence:
1. Take advantage of a modern LMS
One of the best ways to start your path of developing an executive presence is to use the tools your organization should have for employee training and development. If your organization is using an LMS, be sure to start consuming learning materials that revolve around building some of the skills needed to display an executive presence.
2. Define your leadership style
Figuring out what type of leader you want to be is the next step in developing an executive presence. Which combination of traits works best for your leadership style? Now you can start completing management training courses, attending workshops, or working with other management to build up these skills.
3. Set realistic and attainable goals
In order to set yourself up for success, be sure to set SMART goals that directly apply to your professional development as well as how it can impact your organization. It can be anything from completing training programs to attaining a required certification.
4. Enroll in a mentorship program
A mentorship program is a great way to learn from other executives who’ve gone through the same path. You’ll be able to ask them questions directly, have constant guidance, and find best practices or effective ways to handle situations.
5. Join a professional development group
Executive presence requires great communication skills, understanding, and credibility. Joining a professional development group, forum, or community can help build these skills. They will help you improve public speaking, leadership, eye contact, body language, and other valuable skills needed to build an executive presence.
6. Practice your communication skills
One of the most important competencies of an executive is their ability to communicate effectively. Since higher-level managers need to spread awareness of change or ways to accomplish organizational goals, you’ll need to build up these skills. Practice the speaking skills you’ve been learning when interacting with other team members or people outside the company.
7. Record yourself to find improvements
Consider recording yourself giving a presentation, interacting with another team member, or hosting a meeting. Play it back and take note of what you think worked or didn’t. Did you make enough eye contact? How was your body language? Did you communicate concisely and effectively? You can gain a lot of insight into this approach while finding ways to improve.
8. Hire an executive coach
If you have the money or your organization offers this service, this is a great opportunity to bring in an expert. Executive coaches can provide you with the necessary guidance, training, and exercises to develop leadership and communications skills. They will help plan your development path and act as a consultant, answering any questions you may have when developing an executive presence.