Workplace – One place where diverse people work together as a team and yet every one tries to stand out distinctly. Each one of us tries our best to be more professional, more intelligent and more heard. Yes, this is the area where a lot of us lag behind – being heard.
We often wonder what am I doing wrong or what am I missing? I need to be heard and noticed in the office but how?
The tables today are turning. Through ages women have been taught to co-exist with what is being decided but today women are striving harder to be heard, to make their presence felt.
Here are the things you need to remember to be heard in office meetings and discussions:
Trust Yourself and Be Confident: Before you pitch in an idea or a suggestion in a meeting, do all your homework. Be hundred percent sure of your suggestion and its pros and cons before you attempt to convince others.
The Right Body Language: Body language is as important as the words that come out of your mouth. In fact a little more important as it lays the groundwork for you. Start the interaction by speaking well to hold the attention of your colleagues. Notice those who get noticed. Yes, the people who are doing it right, notice how they sit, interact and conduct themselves in office and take notes. Instead of reclining in your chair, always sit with your back straight and closer to the table. This shows that you are interested in the discussion going on.
Choose Your Spot Right: It is important to sit in the right chair. Always try to grab a chair that is near the centre of the table instead of a chair that is at the end of the table. Sitting closer to the centre of the table subtly reinforces that you are important and you want to be included.
Stay Focused: Whenever we are discussing something in a meeting, we are bound to get interrupted. The key to gently convey that you need to finish your points first. Gently say, ‘I would love to hear your opinion as soon as I finish’ or ‘Please allow me to finish…’ At the same time, ensure that you are not dragging the conversation and everything is sorted and summarised to show that you respect other people’s time as well.
Follow Up: Always take note of your ideas and suggestions. If you are not able to convey all, drop a mail to your boss with your suggestions and follow up. Always have a visible trail of your activities and contributions.
Be Diplomatic sometimes: Being straight forward or blunt is not the right way to be a part of a workplace discussion. It is always a good idea to interrupt someone. Start with, ‘I love the idea and we can even try this as well. Also, we can do…’ and pitch in your suggestion as well.
Editor Speaks:I always speak after I have thoroughly done my homework. I never give random suggestions that are not supported by facts. Everyone in our team follows the same principle “Research, Plan and Speak”. This ensures that we get the best out of our meetings in less time. Swati Verma
Founder and CEO, Miss Zesty