Everything You Need to Know About Nonverbal Communication

What’s nonverbal communication?

Nonverbal communication is any communication that doesn’t involve words--it could be your tone, gestures, the way you’re standing -- even your clothing. And it’s super, super important. According to the University of Pittsburgh, 85% of what an audience will take away from a presentation is based on mannerisms, body language, and expressions.

Also, nonverbal communication can increase trust, clarity, and interest in a conversation, making it one of the most valuable tools for meaningful connection.

How can we be better nonverbal communicators?

While it may seem hard to control nonverbal cues, there are actually a lot of tricks for getting better at them. For example:

  1. Eye contact: Make direct eye contact as often as possible

  2. Facial expressions: Smile! It really does go a long way

  3. Space: Remember not to stand too close

  4. Posture: Don’t slouch or swing your legs--be sure you appear attentive and responsive

  5. Tone: This is one you probably have some control over already. Always take a minute before speaking to consider the tone you’re going to use. Even when saying something kind, the wrong tone can make it seem menacing.

Okay, but what about emails, phone calls, text messages--what are we losing?

Kind of a lot, actually. Without visual cues, it can be hard to pick up a complete message. Even on phone calls, since we only have auditory cues, we miss out on facial expressions, eye contact, and posture, leading to conversation that is often misunderstood or taken the wrong way.

But in our increasingly digital world, there’s really no way to avoid online communication. It’s simply impractical to expect all--or even most--of your conversations to be held in person.

Instead, try using video chat more often. Video chat allows you to connect digitally while still catching all those nonverbal cues. It’s as close as you can get to an in-person conversation, without actually having to be in person.

But remember: Keep it simple

If you’re going to use video chat more often, try to avoid using complicated platforms like Skype or Zoom. The point of video chat is to be as close to a face-to-face conversation as possible, and that just won’t happen with all those downloads and unnecessary features crowding you out.

OneClick.chat is designed to be as easy to use as possible. With just a few simple buttons and no downloads at all, you’re one click away from a face-to-face conversation. Click here for a free trial of a meeting room.