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Archive for September 2016

EXECUTIVE PRESENCE: 20 Tips for Watching the Presidential Debates

EXECUTIVE PRESENCE:  20 Tips for Watching the Presidential Debates

election 2016

Candidates “are on the biggest stage in the world, handling three jobs at once. And they cannot fail at any single one of the three and win.”
-Samuel L. Popkin, Author
The Candidate What It Takes to Win – and Hold – the White House

As politics continue to take a mainstream position in the lives of many Americans for 2016, I would be remiss in not addressing that tomorrow evening, it is estimated that more than 80 to 180 million viewers will watch the First Presidential Debate for 2016.

While Hilary Clinton and Donald Trump address the traditional concerns of our Nation’s security and prosperity,  the concern for the “Presidential Image” will take center stage.


The political junkies (myself included), enjoy the updated research on the traditional lessons learned from the first televised Presidential Debate in 1960 between Senator John F. Kennedy and Vice President Richard Nixon and the recent 2012 Presidential Debates between Republican Nominee Mitt Romney and President Barack Obama. We have heard all the faux pas from the five o’clock shadow on television (Nixon), winking (Palin), humor (Reagan), checking watch (Bush), sighing (Gore) to a lack of aggressiveness (Obama). However, this year maybe a special year with a number looming issues as related to the future Commander in Chief’s Executive Presence.


Two of my favorite books serve as great reference material in preparing for viewing the upcoming Presidential Debates, Author Samuel L. Popkin’s, 2012 book, The Candidate What It Takes to Win – and Hold – the White House (CSPAN Book Review:

the candidate poplin











and Sylvie di Giusto’s 2014 book, The Image of Leadership How Leaders Package Themselves to Stand Out for the Right Reasons (Bestseller TV Video:

image guad











In both books we learn key ideas such as how some thwarted their campaigns, how US presidential candidates win elections and how to package and present yourself in a compelling way. Additionally, we learn why certain candidates won while others lost, self-confidence is crucial for those who want to get ahead, and why you must make the most of your physical assets and liabilities


Ninety-nine percent of the time, you will want to fulfill people’s expectations of who you are based on your appearance and communications.
-Sylvie di Giusto, Author
The Image of Leadership How Leaders Package Themselves to Stand Out for the Right Reasons

Here are 20 Nuggets to Remember in Watching the 2016 Presidential Debates:
1. As imperfect as this process is, the American presidential primary election usually yields the best candidates.
2. Candidates should accept their physical appearance, but package themselves in a compelling way.
3. Each type of candidate requires a different campaign strategy.
4. Convince voters that they understand them and their struggles.
5. How candidates package themselves will determine whether people respect them.
6. No matter the candidate’s body type or genetic heritage, self-confidence always will make them look like a winner.
7. People develop good or bad impressions within seven seconds of meeting someone new.
8. People judge candidate’s by their appearance, their friends and other relationships.
9. Candidates who can’t control how they look don’t appear to be leaders. Leaders seem to be in full control of their internal and external circumstances.
10. Presidential candidates join the race as “challengers,” “incumbents” or “successors.”
11. Present a vision for how their election will benefit the nation.
12. The “message box” is a tool candidates use to focus their image and communications, and to position themselves in relation to their opponents.
13. Must head a well-run, highly functional campaign; it foreshadows their ability to serve as America’s chief executive.
14. Dress one level higher than their current role.
15. Present the image people have of leaders.
16. To win the White House, you must succeed at three endeavors (convince voters of your empathy for them, vision, well run campaign)
17. US presidential candidates who seem destined to win often don’t.
18. Shift strategy seamlessly when outside forces demand it.
19. Understand that behavior, communication skills and “digital footprint” also convey your standing.
20. Professional imprint, includes attire, attitude and verbal communication.

2016In summary in reviewing the works of elections expert Samuel L. Popkin, a professor of political science at the University of California, San Diego, and Professional image consultant Sylvie di Giusto, we question the validity of the American electoral system and wonder if it is truly a good or bad system? If the conflict of good vs bad actually yields the best qualified candidates for the period of time in our Nation? We all would agree that just as our Nation has evolved so has our political process, and it is best suited for the times we currently live within.

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EXECUTIVE PRESENCE – 10 Ways to Improve Your Relationships!

EXECUTIVE PRESENCE – 10 Ways to Improve Your Relationships!

by Terri L. Williams


“Being socially connected is our brain’s lifelong passion”
-Matthew Lieberman
Professor of psychology in the UCLA College of Letters and Science

The importance of engaging and establishing relationships with people is an age old tool inprofessional environments. In this light, I pull from the work of Frigyes Karinthy a Hungarian author, playwright, poet, journalist, and translator. He was the first proponent of the six degrees of separation concept, which was first shared in his 1929 short story, Chains. Six degrees of separation is the theory that anyone on the planet can be connected to any other person on the planet through a chain of acquaintances that has no more than five intermediaries.karinthy

In short, the concept is based on the idea that the number of acquaintances grows exponentially with a number of links in the chain. Only a small number of links is required for the set of acquaintances to become the whole human population. By extension, the same term is often used to describe any other setting in which some form of link exists between individual entities in a large set.





The phase also inspired the 1993 film of the same name, Six Degrees of Seperation, where actress Stockard Channing makes the profound statement of how important finding the right six people is to each of us.

Please review the trailer of the film here:

Similarly, in 1936, self-help genre, writer and lecturer Dale Carnegie spelled out his plan for getting what you want from other people by changing your behavior. He expounds on the fundamentals of dealing with people and becoming a great leader. Carnegie developed these principles by drawing from examples of persuasive people in history, such as Abraham Lincoln, and from his own experiences. Since Carnegie wrote his book in 1935, his basic principles are timeless. Today, our formal name for connecting and meeting new people in a professional setting, is referred to as “Networking.”


From an Executive Presence perspective, Networking is an element of Communications. In particular, understanding how much time you have to meet someone and make a positive impact on them today is about the length of time of a sound bite.

Our most famous teacher in regard to communications is American media proprietor, talk show host, actress, producer, and philanthropist Oprah Winfrey. Oprah has always lived by a quote from her favorite poet Maya Angelou, “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”




We all deal with a myriad of things to focus our attention. Online communications has become the biggest competitor of relationship development, in particular social media.


Facebook, 1.6 billion users, 91`% are millennials, average use 48 min per day, 3.7 degrees of separation, largely used for personal networking and relationships. Primarily used for engagement and visibility.



twitter     Twitter, 310 million active users, 100 million daily active users, 38% are millennial, 83% of world leaders use twitter to distribute information for industry information, thought leadership, and customer service. Primary use for “visibility not engagement”.



Linkedin, 433 million active users, active in over 200 countries, 70% of active users are outside the US; 17 minutes is average time spent per month; 380 million skills listed; 200 average connections per profile; primarily used for networking, professional development, and growth.



Form the past 80 years, ale Carnegie’s book How to Win Friends and Influence People, we learn that listening to what other people are saying is more important than talking about yourself; how positive reinforcement is the best way to motivate others; and which 12 techniques you can use to make other people believe what you are telling them.

dale c how to win10 Ways to Improve Your Relationships
1. Be genuinely interested in other people.
“The expression one wears on one’s face is far more important than the clothes one wears on one’s back.”
Dale Carnegie

2. Before criticizing someone else, talk about your own mistakes first.
“Criticisms are like homing pigeons. They always return home.”
– Dale Carnegie

3. Don’t criticize, condemn or complain about people.
“The only way I can get you to do anything is by giving you what you want.”
– Dale Carnegie

4. Express your ideas in a dramatic way. Use illustrations and showmanship to get your ideas across.
“Instead of condemning people, let’s try to understand them. Let’s try to figure out why they do what they do. That’s a lot more profitable and intriguing than criticism; and it breeds sympathy, tolerance, and kindness.”
– Dale Carnegie

5. Encourage others to talk about themselves.
“One can win the attention and time and cooperation of even the most sought-after people by becoming genuinely interested in them.”
– Dale Carnegie

6. If you make a mistake, acknowledge it quickly.
“Criticisms are like homing pigeons. They always return home.”
– Dale Carnegie

7. If you want to change others, start with yourself first.
“It isn’t what you have or who you are or where you are or what you are doing that makes you happy or unhappy. It is what you think about it.”
– Dale Carnegie

8. Praise all improvements, no matter how slight.
“Make the other person feel important, and do it sincerely.”
– Dale Carnegie

9. Remember people’s names. A person’s name is the sweetest and most important sound in any language.
“The only way to get the best of an argument is to avoid it.”
– Dale Carnegie

10. To feel important is one of the strongest human desires. Always make others feel important and never undermine anyone’s sense of importance.
“Remember that a person’s name is to that person the sweetest and most important sound in any language.”
– Dale Carnegie

In summary, whether we are 6 degrees of separation apart or experiencing engagements on social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn, as human beings we hardwired for connection. Unfortunately, it is not enough to connect with people online there is still a need to meet contacts in person. Personal connections allow you to establish rapport and trust. Successful networking involves meeting new people, collecting information and connecting with “decision makers”, says Orville Pierson, senior vice president of Lee Hecht Harrison, an international career services company.

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