Being likable is under your control, you just need a few social skills to help build emotional intelligence.
Keep eye contact
A simple and easy way to show you’re paying attention is making eye contact with the person you’re talking to and to hold it. It is an effective way to convey competence and can help you be judged as more intelligent.
Smile and show enthusiasm
A simple and effective way to convey warmth is by smiling, and having good charisma draws people to you because enthusiasm and energy are contagious. Positive body language is unconsciously mirrored, by laughing and telling jokes, the person you’re with will mirror your enthusiasm.
Put your smartphone away and give a firm handshake
A firm, but not too hard or too limp handshake can contribute to a great first impression. By putting your smartphone away you’re making sure there are no interruptions in the conversation, and the other person has all your attention.
Listen more than you speak. Actively listening requires four simple steps: hearing, interpreting, evaluating, and responding. To hear someone, it requires you to drop what you’re doing and pay attention. To interpret, paraphrase what you’ve heard and ask clarifying questions. To evaluate, stay clear of quick judgment and jumping to conclusions. Make sure you know pertinent information before expressing or forming an opinion. Finally, to respond make sure you give feedback to let the speaker know that you heard them.
Call people by their name
It feels good when you walk into a coffee shop and the barista greets you by your first name. People appreciate when you remember their name, it shows signs of respect and thoughtfulness. If you have trouble remembering people’s names, repeat their name multiple times throughout the conversation or try other strategies like imagery or rhymes associated with the name. Another way is to write their name down in your phone with a short description of who they are, or how you met.
Know how to accept a compliment and how to stroke the other person’s ego
Knowing how to accept a compliment is hard because you don’t want to seem egotistical, but you also don’t want to mumble a “Thanks, you too.” Let them know “Thank you! It feels really good hearing that!” Also, knowing how to stroke the other person’s ego genuinely is extremely effective. Genuine flattery grabs people right by their ego, however too much flattery can be a turn-off. If you’re uncomfortable with giving praise, ask questions that allows you to focus on what is meaningful about themselves and their lives. “Hey, you’re good with advertising, can you help me with….” will help make the person feel like an expert.
Skip small talk and make sure everybody feels included
Forgo polite conversation and get vulnerable with the other person, especially if you’re looking to become friends. If you want to find similar interests you have to find similar emotions in both of you. If you’re in a group and someone is interrupted, ask them to continue their story. “The last thing you mentioned was….will you please continue?” It’s awkward to stand there after being interrupted and wonder if anybody was listening in the first place. If it looks like they’re about to be interrupted, or they’re trying to say something but continuously gets cut-off, ask “Hey Jane, did you want to add something?” but don’t put them on the stop.
Practice good posture and don’t complain
Bad posture shows negative body language and that you’re unapproachable and apathetic. Sitting up straight shows confidence. If you start to complain, stop and take note. Negativity is draining and no one wants to be around a negative-Nancy.
End the conversation right
Final words leave an impression, “I hope you have a good rest of your day!” or “It was good to meet you.”