The Importance of Gestures

Varying research reports that over 50% of our message and our ability to connect and communicate with an audience comes from our gestures and body language.

I have been watching the regular reporting of the Queensland floods and have been shocked and shaken by the enormity of the disaster. I have also been watching with great interest the interviews that have been given by Anna Bligh, Premier of Queensland and Julia Gillard, Prime Minister of Australia.

Anna Bligh has delivered very effective and natural interviews full of honesty, sincerity and emotion and has used natural and free flowing hand gestures as required. The gestures do not dominate and are not repetitive and they blend in with the content being spoken.

Julia Gillard on the other hand has been much less natural and used gestures that distract from what she is saying. This results in her coming across to me as less genuine and less authentic, even though I am sure she is equally genuine in what she is saying. Many of the gestures are repetitive, stilted; do not match the content that is being said and are not consistent with the emotion that is trying to be demonstrated.

The essence of the difference between the two leaders has been captured very well in the West Australian Newspaper on the 14 January, and I enclose a copy for your interest.

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