Professional actors are finely tuned to their emotions, enabling them to speak with the movement of a hand. An effective spokesperson also makes use of body movements to convey appropriate emotion.
The following gestures and expressions are considered positive and convey personal interest and self-confidence:
- Look people in the eye;
- Lean slightly forward, if seated;
- Make hand movements that occur naturally as a supplement to what you are saying;
- Listen intently to anyone who asks a question;
- Listen to what other people have to say.
The following gestures and expressions tend to be negative and convey tension and nervousness:
- Inappropriate smiling, laughter;
- Tightly clasped hands;
- Hands gripping sides of chairs, tables, knees;
- Hands toying with pencils, water glasses, buttons, microphones;
- Drumming on the tabletop;
- Tightening and loosening of jaw;
- A ramrod straight, unnatural posture.
These movements convey impatience and discomfort:
- Swinging legs;
- Shifting in chair;
- Shifting eyes.
These movements convey guilt and disinterest:
- Casting eyes toward ceiling;
- Failure to look at the audience;
- Slouching posture;
- Closing eyes.