I once had an acquaintance of mine share a Chinese proverb with me. It goes something like this, "A man without a smiling face must not open a shop." Imagine such a simple phrase and the truth behind it. Really, how can an angry, upset, disgruntled, exhausted, fill in the blank individual conduct business with the remainder of society? I do not envision much success for one attempting to do so.
So then, what does a smile say to those around us? An introductory smile sets the mood of the conversation. It projects an open and friendly environment. It relaxes those around us by easing the anxiety of the new encounter. Most importantly a genuine smile says, "I'm ready to open up and listen to you. Let's work through this together in honest terms." Imagine visiting a key customer of your business. Of course I hope you take the aforementioned approach. Why don't we treat our family and friends as our life-long customers? It is an astonishing realization. I am even taken aback while composing these words with the significance of that statement.
Lastly then, what does a smile say about us? It says that we are in control of our emotions. Those around us are willing to follow leaders who are in apparent control of their emotions. Additionally, teams tend to mimic the behavior and emotion of the leader. If you want your team to stay cool and unruffled then you must display the same. If you are presenting a cool, calm, open, and friendly manner then those around you will follow suit. We are at our best to work together when we are at peace with our surrounding environment. As leaders we choose the environment that surrounds us.
Copyright © Robert Clinton Chedester 2012