Tag: Teacher

The Business of Body Language: What Some Nonverbal Cues Mean to Making a Sale

Listening to a customer with both the ears and the eyes will lend a hint as to what that customer is really thinking or feeling. Nonverbal communication is considered one of the most significant forms of communicating. Facial expressions, gestures, and body language are important factors in nonverbal cues. Learning to recognize what the client’s eyes say can make or break a sale.

Nonverbal Body Language

Nonverbal communication is sending and receiving messages that are on the visual side versus the spoken side of communicating. Nonverbal cues can be made through gesture, touch, body language, facial expressions, clothing, hairstyles, or voice pitch and quality.

For those working is sales, marketing or business management, positive nonverbal body language, according to Entrepreneur Magazine can be indicated with a brief touch of the hand which indicates building a relationship or placing the hand under a chin indicates a person is trying to make a decision.

Negative body language is often indicated by crossing the arms, a nose rub which is linked to deception, feet pointed toward the door indicating the person is done with a discussion, or one of the most common- invading one’s personal space by getting physically too close to a person.

Facial expressions are generally emotional indicators and can last only a small amount of time but can give great insight into what a person is truly thinking.

Nonverbal Trumps Verbal

The website for Performance Learning Systems which provides training for teachers and educators, quoted a nonverbal expert, Patrick W. Miller who said that if there is a difference between verbal and nonverbal communications, “nonverbal will win hands down.” Glenn Ebersole, a strategic thinking business coach, wrote that “nonverbal behaviors make up a large percentage of our daily interpersonal communication.” Regardless of the type of business one is in, reading nonverbal communications is vital to successfully enhancing one’s own communications skills.

Nonverbal Communications is Two-Way Communications

While learning to recognize nonverbal cues from customers and clients is critical to the entire sales, marketing, and communications process, it is also critical to remember that communications is a two-way process. Professionals working with customers will want to learn to keep their nonverbal communications in check.

Reading Nonverbal Language

Ebersole recommended several ways to reading nonverbal behaviors including training oneself to look for the nonverbal communications that don’t necessarily match the person’s words, keeping appropriate eye contact, and becoming a lifelong learner on learning to recognize and interpret nonverbal communications.

Listening to what the customer says is important but watching and picking up on how the customer reacts with nonverbal communications is just one more way to enhance the sales process.

Forming a Behavior Plan: Teachers Should Try Being Positive!

Teachers find students with problem behaviors very difficult to manage. Students who are disruptive have a negative effect on the classroom atmosphere, which is one that should be focused on educational pursuits, not on a few students who want to rob others of their education. Although educators want to focus on positive interventions, for example, rewarding positive behaviors and giving praise rather than punishments, sometimes interventions that are both positive and negative are appropriate.

Some students with very negative behaviors do not catch on to a positive behavior plan right away, but these are the students that often crave structure and routine—they need absolute rules in place that have very clear rewards and punishments attached. For example, a rule could be stated in this way (remember to state rules in positive terms):

Complete all assigned class work.

  • Reward: Ten minute computer pass
  • Punishment: E-mail or phone call to parent

Often, students who have behavior problems are focused by working on hands-on projects, such as creating charts or graphs or slide shows. It might be a good idea for teachers to pair students who are more focused with behavior problems or if not enough computers are available, enforce time limits, share computers with other teachers (send four students to two other teachers and return the favor sometime.), or send a few students to the media center. Have a conduct card available—if it can be sent by e-mail to other teachers and then to the parent, that would be ideal—so that the students’ behavior can be monitored, especially when s/he is visiting other classes. Monitoring lets the student know how s/he is doing, so make certain a printable copy is also available for him/her.

Punishments are easy to give out; they include detentions, parent contact, removal from the program and other undesirables that foster the idea that school is a negative place, although sometimes these are interventions that make sense for individual students. Rewards increase self esteem, but many teachers find themselves unable to provide rewards that they feel are appropriate or sanctioned by the school. For example, giving students candy is frowned upon, and costly as well. Some rewards may include: free computer time, positive phone calls or e-mails home (although sometimes parents think this is a prank or an intrusion!), time to listen to music with headphones, time to play with a handheld video game. Avoid using free homework passes—this gives the idea that homework is a punishment, something to try to keep away from!

Try to develop a positive behavior plan and see if it is successful. Clues will include: a more relaxed, happier classroom atmosphere and fewer teacher headaches and gray hairs!