Many of us have fears about presenting ourselves in front of a group. Starting with the brief introduction about ourselves. Whether in an online meeting, a first meeting with new colleagues or in the boardroom. How do you do that in an easy way and get over your own cold feet?

The secret to a confident self-introduction, in any context, is a simple 3-step. In addition, equally important is that your listener will receive your introduction. That means zooming in on how your listener processes information. Applying so-called style diversity.

The 3-step
1. Here and now: Start with a brief introduction of yourself such as name and position and possibly brief social status (partner, children, dog). If there is room for it, you can mention more details such as a current project and specific expertise.
2. Past: Add two or three points that give relevant details about your background and credibility. Consider your education, past projects, employers and achievements.
3. Future: Show enthusiasm for what lies ahead. For example, about the project you have just been assigned to, the opportunities you see for the organisation. In a meeting, ask what the team wants to achieve.

I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triomphe over it
– Nelson Mandela
Demand your listener’s attention

Crucial to the success of your introduction is that the other person pays attention to you. This encourages you to speak more confidently. There is nothing more frustrating than talking to a group without being in touch with them. How do you make sure you still manage to hold everyone’s attention in the short time frame of your introduction.

Roughly speaking, you can divide your listeners into four categories. The first category are the direct and result-oriented types. They want to know immediately what it is all about. In other words, briefly give the most essential information in your introduction. The second category are the more flamboyant pacemakers. They respond to energetic appearance and action. The third category needs involvement, the ‘together-feeling’ is important, ‘we do this as a team’. And you engage the last category with clear and relevant details.

By using the right interaction styles, it is possible to get up to 70% (!) more results from the way you introduce yourself or a project. And getting results from the effort you put in simply produces more self-confidence.

The interaction styles tool is extremely interesting for everyone; for managers to get and keep their employees positively involved and for team members to understand each other faster and work pleasantly together.

If you want to learn how to know at a glance which style to use to get more results from all your conversations look at: The Leader in You!


This is the second blog in the series: Influencing with impact

With courtesy to A. Wojnicki for the 3-step

Want to learn more about effectiveness and personal leadership? Watch: The Leader in You!