Direct eye contact has always been a virtuous characteristic in American business.
But this tradition may be about to change. Netflix reportedly instituted a rule prohibiting sustained eye contact for more than five seconds.
Before this new development occurred...
Perhaps more than any other personal trait, good eye contact conveys confidence and a strong self-concept.
Behavioral psychologists refer to this characteristic as "sustained eye contact."
To achieve it, all you have to do is maintain eye contact with the other person for two seconds longer than usual. It also helps to not be speaking during this interval.
Here's an easy way to show yourself the value of mastering sustained eye contact.
The next time you're out to eat, do something different when the server brings your food.
Instead of looking at the plate, smile into the server's eyes. Maintain the smile until he or she notices and smiles back. Then say, "Thank you."
Notice how the server brightens at your response. Almost nobody looks at the server when the food hits the table!
I'm using online presentation training to show clients how to be display persuasive confidence, be more effective and even improve closing ratios using sustained eye contact.
You can employ this effective and respectful form of "sustained eye contact" in formal presentations, small group interaction on video calls--everywhere except Netflix.
Want more tips to improve communication at work? Read this article on how to get more from PowerPoint.