When it comes to doing business, you have to pay attention to every detail. What you say and how you say it will have major repercussions on a commercial relationship. But your body language is also an important part of communication.
Knowing what message your gestures are sending and how to control them is very important in order to avoid being misunderstood. For that reason, today we are talking about the importance of nonverbal language in the hardware business.
Why is nonverbal language in the furniture hardware business and in any other industry so important?
Like it or not, your body will give you away. You can lie with your words, but your gestures and posture subconsciously speak volumes about how you feel. Studying nonverbal language in the hardware business, and in any other business, is very important to help companies avoid projecting insecurities during the most important meetings or negotiations.
Gestures that signal nervousness
Looking nervous in delicate situations can transmit an image of fear or lack of confidence about what is going to happen. These are some gestures that are a sign of anxiousness:
- • Biting your nails or bringing your hand up to your mouth, a gesture that, by the way, is considered rude in countries like China.
- • Constantly touching your hair or scratching your face.
- • Not being able to sit still in your seat, especially when it has wheels.
- • Drumming your fingers, toying with a pen or other object, or repeatedly moving your leg.
- • Touching your earlobe.
- • Biting your lower lip.
Gestures that signal boredom
No matter how boring the meetings you attend may be, you need to know how to keep your composure for the sake of your business. To do this, you should avoid these gestures that belie how uninterested you are in what’s going on:
- • Checking the clock over and over again.
- • Reclining back in your chair.
- • Rubbing your hands together.
- • Resting your head on your hand.
Gestures that give away a lie
To catch lies that your colleagues may tell during meetings, look for these gestures that give them away:
- • Touching their nose with their hand while talking.
- • Avoiding eye contact with the person they are talking to, or staring too intensely.
- • Speaking with lots of pauses.
- • Being excessively nice with an exaggerated, false cordiality.
Gestures that signal a defensive attitude
Even if you try to hide your fears and insecurities, your body will end up revealing them by sending these signals:
- • Crossing your arms in a defensive position.
- • Sitting with your ankles together signals fear.
- • Looking over the top of your glasses with a distrustful expression.
Gestures that signal acceptance and satisfaction
When you see any of these gestures from your colleagues in a meeting, it means the negotiation is on the right track.
- • Stroking their chin.
- • Nodding while the other person is talking.
- • Keeping an upright posture leaning slightly towards the speaker.
Be careful with these gestures! They don’t mean the same thing in every country
While there are gestures that are understood in every corner of the planet, nonverbal language in the hardware business is not always universal. Some expressions can cause misunderstandings in certain countries around the world.
For example, whereas making eye contact during a conversation denotes honesty and transparency in the West, it may be understood as rudeness and vanity in Asia. Or, while it is a sign of affirmation in Spain, giving a thumbs-up is considered an insult in countries like Russia and Greece.
Pointing with the index finger is an impolite gesture in many parts of the world, such as Asia and the Middle East, where they prefer to point with an open hand.
Also, in countries like Egypt, it is considered very improper to sit with legs crossed.
Given the cultural differences, including in nonverbal language, you may have doubts if you are thinking about doing business with hardware manufacturers in China. But at IBMH, we can help you by offering advice based on our experienceof more than twenty years working in the industry and in the management of hardware imports from this Asian giant to the five continents. Thanks to our experience and our multicultural team of professionals, we can give you all the support you need to improve the quality and profitability of your hardware imports.