Power Play: Feel the vibe in the room

Power Play: Feel the vibe in the room

Yeah, I know this one sounds a bit wheatgrass shot and muesli, but real influencers can almost immediately take the temperature of the room once they’ve walked into it.

It is 8:30am on Monday and in an all-staff meeting you’re called on to say something about the week ahead. If the room feels sluggish and non-responsive, now is not the time to get all Anthony Robbins on them; trying to ‘awaken the giant within’ will simply be met with scorn and cynicism (the giant must be roused carefully on Mondays).

Better to tell the truth – something like ‘let’s get on with it’. No need to get out the pompoms, just an honest acknowledgement of a lack of energy and motivation can turn around a room.

People often appreciate a soft sell, and powerful types know this and can gently nudge people in the right direction.

The story

I had to attend a business dinner where there was a bit of a set script between my business partner and I. However, the minute we sat down to the table the vibe was off.

If we’d gone with the ‘script’ the dinner would have been a calamity, but instead we let the conversation take its own course and quickly worked out that our dining companion was in an awful mood because he’d had a terrible day; what we were going to ask for would have pushed him over the edge.

Reading the temperature within the first few minutes and being able to improvise is key to staying alive in business.


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