Your nonverbal communication often matters more than what you say.
The cues are right there in front of you to be read; learning how to do so can help improve your career.
These straightforward ideas anchor Navarro’s quick, accessible and illustrated work.
In contrast with others who have explored this topic, Navarro does not confine himself to physical nonverbal communication.
Rather he explains that noverbal communication comes through in how you present yourself, how you keep your desk, how your storefront looks and even how you talk with people on the phone.
A lot of this information seems self-evident-it’s rarely a good idea to show up to a job interview late and wearing athletic socks-and Navarro does have interesting advice about mirroring what other people are doing and saying to make them feel more comfortable and connected.
By mirroring, he means positioning your body in the same way the other person with whom you are talking is doing as well as incorporating key phrases that person uses in your conversation with her. For example, if someone says they are angry, you should not say, “I can see you’re upset,” but rather should also use the word “angry.”
The book also has useful information about thinking about the context in which you move your body in different ways. Putting your hands behind your head is fine when you are talking with people below you in rank, but should not be done around your boss.
Navarro also encourages the reader to take stock of his or her nonverbal communication and work regularly to improve it. His final chapter is a bit more FBI-specific, and includes information about how to detect and weed out deception. Here he suggests circling back to a topic about which the person is not initially forthright later in the conversation.
Navarro drops in anecdotes throughout the books in which he usually comes out pretty well, and also refers to the famous Nixon-Kennedy debate in which radio listeners thought Nixon had won, while the much larger television audience favored the younger, more glamorous and relaxed-looking Senator from Massachusetts.
Louder Than Words is not likely to significantly alter one’s career trajectory, but it is another tool through which one can interact more consciously and thoughtfully with other people.