What is Digital Body Language

Let’s be honest, we’ve now got this small window of digital space to communicate our message, so let’s unpack what message your body language is sending!

In this LiveTime with Alec, we unpack…

  • What this small window we have now in this new digital age
  • How your current body language could be telling a different story
  • How present are you to the people you are talking to
  • what to do with your hands…

Episode Transcribe

What’s up, everybody?

Welcome to LiveTime with Alec.

I hope you’re having a good Tuesday. Oh yeah. It’s Tuesday. Should be a Monday. Sorry. I’m getting my LinkedIn all set up down here because Stream [inaudible 00:00:11] doesn’t like to hear or see LinkedIn comments which suck. So Chris, welcome. Yeah. Today we’re going to talk about digital body language. This is a continuation of a conversation that I had with Rene Rodriguez. And if you missed that shame on you, but don’t worry. We’re going to release it as a podcast and you can go to the YouTube channel and check it out. But one of the things that he talked about, which was exceptionally powerful was the power of your digital body language. This is a crucial concept because we can’t get physical anymore. LinkedIn just went live. I got it up. Thank you guys for joining me on LinkedIn, YouTube, and Facebook. Let’s talk about digital body language.COVID has made it so abundantly clear that we now live in this little box on our computer screens. And so your body language is now more important than ever because there is no action going on in our sales process and even in our meetings, like our digital meetings. How many of you, by just throwing a comment in there, have seen in a Zoom call or in a WebEx or in a Team, Hangout, Microsoft [inaudible 00:00:01:19], the one person who’s like asleep. You know what I’m talking about? Like they’re just not even in the game at all, or the best is their camera’s off. So you know what the camera off shows me? You don’t give a shit about whoever’s on the call you’re with. Oh yeah. I went there. I even cussed for expletive purposes to like make the point.Like if you don’t have the respect to put the camera on and get a light on your face and hang out with me on a call, then it’s like going to a meeting and sitting down there and the guy shows up in his onesie pajamas, like just cruises in. The amount of disrespect you’re showing by not showing up is so crazy to me. Yeah, dude. Somebody liked it on LinkedIn. That’s what I’m talking about guys.So number one, let’s talk about digital body language. And you can’t talk about that if your camera’s not on. I don’t care what you look like, dude or gal. I don’t care. It’s a meeting. Show up in the meeting. Okay, so let’s break it down, not only just like a video sales pitch, I’m not even going to go there yet. Which all of you should recognize like how important body language is in a sales pitch. But let’s just talk about your WebExs and your Zoom calls guys. Okay, you know what I… If your camera’s not on, you’re disrespecting everybody there. If your camera is on, but you’re this guy. “Oh yeah, yeah, no. I’m paying attention. Yeah, for sure.” I know what you’re doing. You’re not paying attention. Again, that’s like me sitting in a meeting with you and you just staring at your phone the whole time, which I’m actually really, really guilty of so I got to be real careful like calling the kettle black right now.But do you feel me though? Like if we’re in a meeting and you’re over here. “Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. Yeah. For sure.” Your body language sucks. If you’re in a meeting and you’re laying back in your chair, you’re not engaged. You’re not even here with me. You’re not even paying attention. This is so crucially important. So crucially important. Think about it. If your boss, mentor, coach, friend, colleague is sitting on a Zoom call with you and you’re not actively engaged with your body language, with your eye contact, with your focused listening, you’re missing out. You’re blowing it. You are blowing it and you shouldn’t be.I saw Jason Martinson, a guy who runs Hawaii for us, awesome human being. He put on LinkedIn the other day a little sticky note right underneath the camera and it was a smiley face. And I love it because it’s part of this conversation, which is like remember to smile, remember to engage this camera because that’s what the person sees. Remember this person has this box to experience you with. This is it. This is what they experience. Are you focused? Are you engaged? Are you present? Is your posture good? Like I know because we sit in our chair and we turn into little T-Rexs, and this is what we look like when we’re just kind of doing stuff. I get it, but it’s not good enough and we need to be better. And digital body language sets the entire tone.A silly example, your boss puts together a Zoom call. You don’t even get on the camera. Disrespect. You get on the camera, but you’re not paying attention. You’re typing over here. You’re on mute. First of all, if you’re on mute and you’re looking like, I know what you’re doing. And look, it’s hard. It’s hard. It’s hard to stay focused. You’ve got your computer. You’re on a call. Maybe it’s boring. Maybe you don’t even like the content. I don’t know. But I’m telling you that if you want to up your game, you better put some stickies or some things in your backgrounds or something to remind you to come to the call, to come to the camera and engage.Now let’s for sure talk about sales because now we’re selling with this box again and digital body language is now more important than absolutely ever before. And it is a learned, practiced thing. You don’t naturally turn the camera on and be like, “Boom, I’m here to play” and bring your A game. But Rene taught me something really cool and I want to share it again with you guys because it made an impact in how I show up now digitally. And so I’m going to pass it on. These guys. These guys. Oh my gosh. Have you seen… Think about a speaker that you know, or like when you watch politicians, people talk with their hands.Now when you’re on a camera like this and you’re sitting your hands tend to be where? On the keyboard, out of the frame. That is not a good place for them to be. They need to be part of the conversation, but they’re down here. So you actually have to have a little more intentionality to bring your hands and your body into the camera. Sometimes when you just sit here like this all day long, you turn into a talking head and you’re boring. And you’re just like, “Yes. And the mortgage backed security market went down 2.5% and then the rates stayed the same or flat.” And I don’t care. Stop it. Stop immediately.If you’re going to sell, if you’re going to bring your story forward, bring it forward with your body language. This is why I always coach people and encourage people to stand up when they talk on video. It’s not for everybody and there are times when sitting is totally appropriate and totally fine. But I think that when you stand, you gain a little bit more energy and purpose. You can actually bring your hands away. My keyboard’s away from me. It’s like over there. So I’m not tempted to sit there and type and I can talk like this and engage. Yes, it’s a little bit like Ricky Bobby. [inaudible 00:07:18] like, “I don’t know what to do with my hands.”But you can do what you normally do, which is you can gesticulate. That word. I was a little scared to let that one out of the mouth, but it just went. But you can point things out. You can talk. You can exclaim. You can do this. I don’t really care, but bring them out. One of my favorites personally, on the hips right here. Yeah. I’m here in the hips. I don’t know. Look, I don’t claim to have any more intelligence than anybody out there doing this game. What I do know is that when I hear things that are correct, they resonate and they sink in. And what Renee said was absolutely correct. Your hands need to be part of the conversation.Digital body language matters. Digital body language matters. I didn’t want to keep this particular conversation LifeTime very long, but I want to drive home the point. When you’re in a meeting online, you got to show up to win. You got to show up to show respect. You got to turn the camera on, get the light on, be present. It’s just like going to a meeting in real life. If you need to put sticky notes to remind yourself, to show up, great. Put something around your camera, put a smiley face like Jason did right next to the camera. Do whatever you need to do to remind yourself to play big. Your colleagues are watching. Your boss is watching. Everyone’s watching.Yeah, Jenny, I cannot live without a standup desk thing. I actually think Varidesk, which is now Vari, is epic. But there’s so many like affordable options now where you can buy sit-stand desks that are electronic. One of my videos in my 100 videos, 100 days was on standing desks. I think standing and sitting throughout your day can help bring new energy. It’s incredibly powerful. And by the way, if you don’t want to buy a Vari desk, I don’t care. Go get some boxes and stack them up. You’re just as good. Trust me. But it’ll add a ton of energy to your videos, to your conversations.And so circling back, in your meetings, guys… You want to be a leader on your team, for your community, then you got to show up big on digital calls. And I really, really encourage people… Oh yeah. Nice. Nice, Sean. That’s a steal. I really, really encourage people to play big. Even if you’re just a part of the team, your leadership can show up. And that’s you being engaged and involved. I know it’s hard. We want to put ourselves on mute, but when you put yourself on mute, guys, you can’t contribute to the experience and the conversation in the meeting. You can with your fingers. I try to do that all the time. When I’m on mute or I’m on a podcast with a guest and they’re talking and they say something I like, I like to point and thumb up and this because I’m in the conversation. Digital body language matters.So in a meeting, showcase your leadership, showcase who you are, who you want to be. Step up big for your boss, your colleagues, your friends, your peers, and play a big game in digital body language. And then on the sales side, yeah, you got to bring the A game. Of course you do. You got to have all the power going on in the video space.Leanne made a comment on LinkedIn, which I can’t show on the screen because LinkedIn doesn’t like this platform, but… Background. So yes, your digital body language sets a tone of the conversation. But guys, because we have this box to communicate with, right? Because this is our communication window I know you’re not just staring at me the whole time. I know you looked over my shoulder at this thing and were like, “What is going on there?” And then I know you saw kind of glowy lights and Deadpool and nerd stuff. Like I know you saw that stuff because you have the opportunity, not only with your digital body language, but in this box to communicate a message and a story.Sohrab. Just right here, like… Yes. Your box can tell a story, not just your posture and your body language, but what’s behind you gives a message. And that’s why I think you should curate your entire message. This whole experience that you’re seeing right now sends a message. You’re like, “Hey.” If you’re an ’80s kid, you’re like, “Oh, I recognize the Nintendo thing right there. I get it.” And like, “Oh, I like Marvel stuff and comic book stuff. That’s kind of cool.” You get to know a little bit about me too because I’m sharing that with you. If you’re in your living room and behind you is a window, which crushes all your light and I can’t see anything, what message are you delivering? We need to be intentional. We need to curate it. We need to absolutely lean into this stuff because it’s new. We need to be thoughtful about it.And this again comes back to my last pro tip. If you realize that you’re struggling with this body language thing because it’s not top of mind, do whatever it takes to make it top of mind. Do whatever it takes. Like figure out a sticky note, a smiley face on the camera, like whatever it takes. Ask somebody for feedback. Steve Pfrenzinger, who has been a friend of mine and my family’s for almost 30 years, is like the feedback king. He keeps saying that like the power of feedback is what really transforms us. It’s our super power. Self-awareness. Ask people. Like, “Hey, did you watch my video? Yeah, what’d you think? And like, did you notice the background?” And just lean into it, guys. Lean into that opportunity. Ask about how your body language. Ask if it showed up the way you want to.But let’s play a big game with our digital body language. Let’s play a big game. Let’s lead the way we want to, show up the way we want to, because it makes a difference on your impact, on your brand, on your influence. All of it makes a difference in how you show up digitally. Make sense? I super appreciate this conversation today. We’re going to keep it at like 15 minutes. We’re on 13 right now. So all you guys joining me on LinkedIn, Facebook, and YouTube, I super appreciate it. But this conversation needed to happen because somebody needed to hear that the digital body language matters and we’re not paying attention to it and we should.But it doesn’t just matter in the sales game. It matters how you show up for your colleagues, your bosses, your peers, your friends on every single call you do. Even a Zoom call with your buddies, even then your digital body language sends a message. And I think it should send the message that you want it to send. That’s it. There it is. Boom. I appreciate you guys. Have a wonderful, wonderful rest of your week and I will see you guys Thursday with another killer podcast.Just so you guys know we’re starting something new up. We are going to be going live every Tuesday and going live every Thursday with a podcast with a guest, radically pushing out some more information for all of you guys. I appreciate everything you do. Be on the lookout. Be on the lookout. We’re starting up an email and a text group to hang out together throughout all the weeks and days of our crazy lives. I think the more we can continue our conversations with each other, the more I can learn from every single one of you, the more we can contribute together on these platforms, the better we get at them. Thank you, Tiffany. The more we play, the better we get. Annette on LinkedIn, this is awesome. Thank you very much. I appreciate all you guys. Have a wonderful day. I’ll see on the internet.