How to look like the smartest person in the meeting – even if you’re not

Being smart is not just about knowing things – it’s also about being able to show people that you’re on top of things, even if you’re not.

Sometimes you can just tell that someone is intelligent before they’ve even said a word. A lot of it is confidence in their own abilities, but sometimes it’s just that they’ve managed to convince themselves that they’re smarter than everyone in the room.

People Clapping for man in Glasses While in a Meeting

It’s not hard to appear to be the smartest person in a meeting, even when you’re not.

Keep quiet
People often talk in meetings to fill a gap or to make it look like they have something interesting to say, when usually they don’t.

By staying quiet, you’ll not only be able to pick up on what’s being said but you won’t fall into the trap of saying the wrong thing and proving to everyone that you’re not the smartest person in the room.

Use your body
Confidence plays a big part in how intelligent people think we are. Someone whose posture is open and confident is more likely to be thought of more intelligent than someone hunched over.

Don’t shuffle, fidget or gaze out the window. Keep calm, lean in when someone is talking and look people in the eye when you speak.

Be prepared
If you go into a meeting under prepared, you’ll always be on the back foot playing catch up. Make sure you know exactly what’s on the agenda and that you’ve got something to say about everything.

Have anything you want to say fully rehearsed and be prepared for questions. It’s no use memorising interesting facts if you go to pieces when questioned about them.

Have good support
To make sure you’re best prepared for your meeting, make sure you’ve got a good team behind you.

Your skills and knowledge might be lacking in certain areas, so hire someone who can cover these areas for you and give you easy to digest summaries.

People sat in a Meeting with a Woman Discussing Something

Don’t wing it
And if you don’t know something, just admit it. It shows a lot more confidence to say you don’t know but will go away and have a look, than if you try to wing it and end up looking like a fool.

The reasoning behind this is that if you admit you don’t know about one thing, everyone assumes you know about everything else that’s been mentioned in the meeting.

Stick to your strengths
If you do have something to add to the meeting, make sure it’s in an area that you’re fully versed in. Wow the crowd with your in-depth knowledge of a certain subject and then sit back and keep quiet when it’s an area you’re less familiar with.

 

Posted by Ashleigh Sharp

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