In the world of business, we are taught so many skills, methods, processes, and practices, yet the simplest most endearing of skills is that of the smile. 13 little muscles that bring a sparkling, engaging, delightful, and encouraging facial expression that truly makes a difference.
What does ‘smile and the world smiles with you’ really mean?
In short, our smile reflects our state of mind. When you smile, you are OK, but it also means you perceive that everybody else around you is OK too. The power of a smile can turn fear into calm, anxiety into peace, and worry into relief.
Why is it so important to smile in business?
Not only does smiling make you feel happier and more positive, but it can also lead to higher rates of productivity. Did you know that studies show being happy has a significant effect on productivity in the workplace? Simply put, smiling causes feelings of satisfaction and more joyful emotions, resulting in more creativity, focus, and results.
There are two key conveyances that happen when we smile which is why the act of smiling in business is so important.
Reward: Smiles convey approval, happiness, contentment, and other positive feelings.
Affiliation: Smiles communicate positive intention, trustworthiness, belongingness, compassion, and social connection.
Whether presenting to your team, the company, a client, a vendor or just being out and about, another compelling reason to smile is that it may lengthen your overall lifespan. And who doesn’t want that?
As a leader, your smile carries so much power, loyalty, commitment, and trust. Let’s face it, no one wants to follow a dour, grumpy, or unfriendly leader – but a smiling, welcoming one can move mountains.
Let’s look at how smiling impacts business in a functional way.
Smiling Relieves Stress: Stress can permeate our entire being, including showing up in our faces and expression. Those around you looking to you for leadership, security, trust, or guidance will respond completely differently if you are smiling when you speak versus frowning or looking glum or unfriendly. People trust a smiling face plain and simple.
Smiling Elevates Mood: Not just your mood but those around you. The physical act of smiling activates pathways in your brain that influence your emotional state—meaning that by adopting a happy facial expression, you can "trick" your mind into entering a state of happiness. The real magic happens when your smile affects those around you who need no tricks to feel the improved mood that arises from within.
Think of smiling as a natural antidepressant for you and your observers.
Smiling Is Contagious How many times have you heard that a smile has the power to light up the room? To a large degree, it is true. Smiling not only elevates your mood, but it can also change the moods of others for the better.
Research suggests that smiles are even contagious which is how ‘You’ and ‘Your’ smile changes the world.
Smiling Boosts the Immune System: Smiling can also boost your overall health by helping your immune system to function more effectively. A healthy person means healthy employees and less absenteeism.
Smiling Suggests Success: Did you know that research has shown that people who smile regularly appear more confident are more likely to be promoted, and are more likely to be approached? Smile and Success will find you.
Smiling Helps You Stay Positive: Our smiles influence our feelings and signal our brain that "Life is good!" and, ultimately, so are we! Staying positive helps us grow, lead, influence, and impact our peers, and senior leadership which ultimately breeds success.
Smile, crinkle your eyes, giggle, and give your best self to the world through the wonder of your smile. And heck, while you’re at it have a good chortle too.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: DINA O'REILLY
Dina is 4xi's growth lead, project management office and ghostwriter in residence all in one. To learn more about 4xi, you can contact Dina directly at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit our website to learn more about who we are, what we do, and how we inspire a brighter future, together: www.4xiconsulting.com
4xi Global Consulting & Solutions is a team of talented leaders from both the client-side and service provider side, impacting the Human Experience (HX) for people at work, in education, rest, and at leisure.
We believe in a people-first, experience-led philosophy. Whether client, employee, or guest – their experience is the fundamental foundation of success.
We work with corporations, service providers, and innovators:
Strategic Advisory & Special Projects (SPx)
Headquarters Fractional Support On-Demand
Evolving Experiences© - Employee (EX) & Customer Experience (CX)
Design4Life©: Environmental, Physical, and Experiential Design
Global Amenities Strategy, Design & Operations
TRUE NORTH©: Strategic Partnership & Growth
Explorers Innovation Directory: Gateway to Innovation
Sustainability Simplified©: Supply Chain & Innovation
Market Research Reports & Benchmarking
4xi is proud to be Chair of WORKTECH Academy for North America and a member of its Leadership Advisory Board. 4xi is a Global Ambassador for WORKTECH Academy.
San Francisco | New York | Philadelphia | Orlando | North Carolina | Seattle | Silicon Valley | Santiago | London | Tokyo