The Basics of Body Language

The Basics of Body Language

The power to read body language is a skill that will enhance anyone’s career. Body language is a kind of communication, and it has to be exercised like any other kind of communication. Whether in management or sales, it is essential to understand the body language of others and exactly what your own body is conveying.

Communicating with Body Language

We are always communicating, even when we are not speaking. Unspoken communication makes up over half of what we tell others. It bears on our work and personal relationships. Improves management, negotiating and interpersonal skills by correctly interpreting important signals  and body language.

The Power of Body Language:

  • It is honest: Body language conveys truth, even when words do not.
  • Creates self-awareness: Understanding body language helps you distinguish your own activities that impede success.
  • Understand feelings: Body language shows feelings and motivations such as aggression and submission.
  • Enhance listening and communication skills: Paying attention to body language makes someone a better listener. Hear between what is being said and the words spoken.
  • Proximity: The space between people
  • Positioning: Position of a body
  • Facial expression: The eyes are especially noted.
  • Touching: This includes objects, people, and themselves.
  • Breathing: The rate of respiration is telling.

We are constantly reading the body language of other people, even when we are not aware of it. Actively reading body language, however, will improve communication and offer valuable insight. Pay attention to the motions and positions of people around you. Specifically, their head positions, physical gestures, and eyes.

The signs you send to others

You are always sending signals to other people. These signals come through voice, body language, personal space and appearance.

  • Body language: Body language includes motions, facial expressions and posture.
  • Appearance: A person’s dress and hygiene send signals to others. People get to negative assumptions based on an unkempt appearance.
  • Personal distance: Too much personal distance makes people appear cold. On the other hand, not valuing the personal distance of others will suffer negative effects.
  • Voice: Tone is important to the way we communicate. Emotions are expressed through tone.

Cultural Differences

International business means working with different cultural backgrounds. While certain expressions are generally known, many gestures are cultural. It is essential to research the communication style and etiquette of whatever culture you do business with ahead of time.

Body Language Basics training course in  Sandton

How to Assess Learning During a Training Session

How to Assess Learning During a Training Session

It is just as important to assess learning during a training session, as before and after the session. You need to include this in your training plan to ensure that your trainees do not get lost at any stage of the training program.

Review the Learning Objectives

At the beginning of the program, make sure you review the learning objectives of the course with participants. Give them the opportunity to give you feedback about the objectives:

  • Are all the objectives clear?
  • Is there anything that is missing?
  • Do the objectives seem reasonable?
  • Do participants understand how these learning points can translate back to the workplace?

During the program, check in with participants to make sure you’re still on track with the learning objectives. When participants are asked to perform evaluations, point out the ties back to the learning objectives.

Hip-Pocket Assessments

During the training session, check in with participants and evaluate them on reactionary and learning levels. Questions that you will want to ask include:

  • How do participants feel about the training?
  • What has been the best thing about the training so far? The worst thing?
  • What have participants learned?
  • What would participants still like to learn?
  • You may also want to ask specific questions about key content points.

Quizzes and Tests

Quizzes and tests are a good way to measure how much participants are learning during the course. Mid-point tests are useful in many situations, including:

  • Workshops that have a lot of content
  • Workshops with challenging content
  • Long workshops
  • Topics that depend on each other

Don’t forget that a test does not have to mean an hour-long exam. Try some of these fun ideas instead:

  • Divide participants into pairs or teams. Have them write quiz questions for each other. If the group is competitive, make it a tournament.
  • Place sheets of flip chart on the walls with key topic Assign a group to each sheet and have them discuss that topic. Or, have participants walk around and jot their own notes on the sheet, and review as a group.
  • Have participants sit in a circle. Toss a ball to a person and have them name one thing that they have learned so far. Have participants throw the ball around until everyone has spoken.

Skill Assessments

You may need additional tools to assess changes in behavior, abilities, and attitude during the training sessions. Below is an introduction to some of the tools that can help you evaluate these types of learning:

  1. Demonstrations: Demonstrations can be a very powerful teaching tool, particularly for complex tasks. One method is to demonstrate the desired function, and then have participants demonstrate it back to you. Or, place participants in groups or pairs and have them demonstrate the task to each other. Just monitor the activity to make sure that the information is correct.
  2. Role Play: Role plays are often listed as participants’ least favorite part of the workshop, but they are very helpful when learning new behaviors. Conflict resolution, mediation, negotiation, communication, and training are just a few of the topics where role plays can be helpful.
  3. Games: Games can provide a fun yet educational learning experience for participants. Make sure to practice the game ahead of time and make sure that it truly helps participants practice the skill that they are learning. And don’t forget – always have a backup
  4. Simulations: When they are well designed, simulations are excellent ways to assess how well a participant has learned a skill. They are particularly useful in situations where it is imperative that participants have excellent knowledge before going ahead with the real task, such as medical procedures or machine operation.

You can enhance the usefulness of these tools by adding a subjective rating system to them. For example, you could have a scorecard for demonstrations and role plays, or perhaps the simulator can provide a report on the user’s success and failure rates.

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