Over the last couple of weeks, my colleague Will karlsen and I have been musing on what it is to have impact, gravitas and charisma. Have a listen to our two podcasts Episodes 17 & 18 on the topic. We all know when we meet someone who could be described as credibly having any or all of the ‘impact, gravitas and charisma’ trinity. The question we might ask is ‘how do we develop these three?’
These qualities might often be associated more with nature than with nurture, but the truth is, they can absolutely be developed, nurtured, in our lives should we make that choice.
A lot of the answer is caught up in how engaged with the topic or debate I am. It’s very hard to demonstrate impact gravitas or charisma if I am not engaging with the other party. Engagement is about listening, but it is communicated through response. I need to respond to what I have listened too, for people to read ‘engaged’.
Have an opinion
Having an opinion really matters too. People without an opinion will fail to have impact. Man sure your opinion is shared, you have a right to your view even when it’s not the same as others. Owning our position shows strength.
Take interest in others
People who care come across well, because they invest in the other person. The ability to impact is greatly enhanced when people feel they are valued by you. Ask questions and keep eye contact to show you are truly present with them.
Charimsa comes from the word charis or ‘grace’. Think of gracefulness. Are you clunky or graceful in the way you go about things? But also think about grace meaning ‘unmerited favour’ – giving generously when it is least deserved.
Work at being liked
People with charisma often operate using referent power. That has to do with attractiveness. I will be influenced by someone I find attractive in whatever way. I admire you, I think you are funny, I like the way you are principled, etc. All ways in which follows will be influenced by your referent charisma. Make yourself someone others want to work with.