10 Takes on Personal Presence

1. Style. See Bill Cunningham New York, the documentary about the world’s best street style photographer. It is the tale also of a decades-long unerring point of view.

2. Grooming. SMPS Boston shared “Dress for Success” tips last week on their blog. We had to clip the grooming section, which said essentially, “Get a facial a couple of times a year to avoid over-reliance on cosmetics.”

3. Persuasion. My dramatic speech teacher from high school found a lucrative encore career helping executives become more lucid and persuasive.

4. Holding a room. Sometimes this means getting to know the room ahead of time. How much will your voice have to project?

5. Posture. You cannot hold a room unless you stand up straight.

6. Preparation. Send people the agenda ahead of time when it is your meeting to lead. You will make them feel respected.

7. What Dad said. “Firm handshake and look ’em in the eye.”

8. Poise. See L’Amour Fou for a peek into the man behind 70s fashions, Yves St. Laurent and Valentino: The Last Emperor for a fashion business marriage of two men.

9. Manners. It is truly illuminating to read etiquette books from different decades. Miss Manners and Emily Post are still the reigning champions.

10. Generosity. Smile to yourself and to others and see it returned in unexpected ways.

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