How to use body language : Tips on Power Posing at Work

It takes 7 seconds to make a judgment about a person when first meeting them. This means there’s little time to make the ultimate first impression. According to The Wall Street Journal, new research shows that using powerful body language can actually change a person’s hormones and behavior, just as if she had real power. You don’t have to be a superhero to command attention: you just have to stand like one. 

Tips on power posing at work
Balmain Backstage

The Wonder Woman pose is the ultimate power pose, where you put your hands on your hips. Standing with your feet apart and your hands on your hips may feel odd at first, but this is a power pose in its essence. Beyoncé does it, Christine Lagarde does it, and Oprah does it. Cuddy wrote on the Harvard Business Review blog, “This isn’t about what your body language is communicating to others; it’s about what your body language is communicating to you: Your body language is changing your mind, which changes your behavior, which changes your outcomes.”


In this Ted video, social psychologist Amy Cuddy shows how “power posing” — standing in a posture of confidence, even when we don’t feel confident  can affect testosterone and cortisol levels in the brain, and might even have an impact on our chances for success. An absolute must watch for us #careergirls

3 Ultimate power poses:

#1 – Use your space
You stretch and expand your body to take up as much space as possible. Sit with your arm spread out around the chair next to you. Even if you’re sitting, try to make yourself as big as possible. According to research, this move shows power and dominance.

#2 – Have a firm handshake
Women in business are judged very harshly on their handshakes. Even more than their male counterparts, women with weak handshakes are judged to be passive and less confident

#3 – Before an interview
Using a power pose during your interview could come off as offensive. Before the interview, throw your hands in the air and widen your stance, as if you’re soaking in the applause after an encore performance. Do it in the elevator or stairwell on your way up to the office, or in the bathroom before checking in with reception. Hold the pose for two minutes to set those hormonal changes in motion and give you the confidence you need to ace the interview.

What are your tips on body language? Let us know

  1. I recently went on a training course with work that taught us about first impressions and using good body language to build a rapport with clients, interesting stuff!

    Kirsty |

  2. This post is great and gives wonderful tips about how to have more powerful body language. I have a few body language tips that I try to use in my work interactions or interactions in general. One, limit how many times I cross my arms. Crossing my arms is usually my standard way to hold my arms, but it does the opposite of what a power pose does. Instead of using your space, it makes you look smaller. It looks like you’re cutting yourself off from who you’re talking to and makes you look like you’re angry or upset. Instead I try to lace my fingers and put my hands in my lap or even try the Wonder woman pose. My next tip is to stand tall. Chin up, shoulders back. It’s amazing how much standing up straight can help you feel better and more confident about yourself. I hope these tips help.

  3. We definitely underestimate the power of body language but it is so vital. When I am nervous or anxious I have after realised that I was standing timidly or playing with my hair which would have been a big give away that I wasn’t feeling Confident or dominant. I want people to feel my presence and my power so now I ensure I use my arms and smile to give people the impression I am not scared or intimidated (even if I am)

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