What is Executive Presence? | Part 2: Communication

This topic has a lot of complexity to it, so I’ll mention a few areas. The key is to be honest with yourself about your communication. Most of us don’t really know what others think of us, so it’s important to let people weigh in and really listen … if Executive Presence is your goal.

  • Do I communicate in a way that others respond to? How do I know?
  • If someone doesn’t respond the way I like, what do I do about it?
  • Do you have trouble communicating your intentions or do people sometimes misunderstand what you are asking or telling them?
  • Do you set context when you speak or do people have to figure out how what you say connects to the “big picture”?
  • Do you tell people what to do or get them to do things another way? If another way, how do you do it?
  • How direct, indirect, or collaborative are you? If all 3, what percentage of the time do you use each? Are you equally skilled in all areas or do you have a go-to preference of style?
  • To what degree can you change your communication style to fit a situation?
  • How do you communicate when under pressure?
  • What’s most challenging for you when it comes to communication?
  • How well do people understand you when you speak the first time? Do you commonly have to repeat, rephrase, or explain yourself?
  • Do you find yourself arguing with people often? Do people often want to argue with you?
  • Do people get silent around you?
  • How many of your direct reports are comfortable confronting you with something they believe you may disagree about?
  • How would you explain/define your management style?
  • How would others explain/define your management style? Is it the same or different?
  • What are your blindspots?
  • What have you done to improve your communication skills?
  • What areas do you struggle most with?
  • How aware are you of communication in general?
  • How do you usually go about getting things done?
  • What process have you gone through in your professional career in terms of growth in communication?
  • Is there a gap between how you “show up” now and how you would like to “show up” in terms of presence?

Once you answer these questions, you will begin to see some insights and room for growth or you may understand more about your journey.

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