Noah Zandan

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Expressing Non-Verbal Confidence and Power: The Steeple Hand Gesture

A question we often get is "How do I demonstrate confidence and power in a professional presentation through my body language?" For beginners, this comes with presence, poise, and proper proxemics. For advanced and professional speakers, our tested audiences love the steeple hand gesture.

As demonstrated in four different varieties below, the steeple gesture is shown by placing your hands together as if you are praying and can be modified by separating the palms but keeping the fingers in tact.



Austrian National Bank OeNB Governor and ECB Governing Council member Nowotny listens during interview in Vienna





Especially evident in the fourth photo, this is a form of dominant behavior because it is a form of pointing. We see a lot of great presenters incorporate the steeple, especially politicians and government leaders. The steeple is an indicator of comfort; a non-verbal demand that your audience listens because you are powerful and are saying something important.

One final word of advice: in our testing, we have found that over 80% of audiences prefer speeches than end with demonstrations of confidence and power versus speakers who go to it initially or repeatedly.

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