Executive Presence: Where grace meets gravitas

Executive Presence: Where grace meets gravitas


Each of us presents ourselves a particular way. We give off a certain aura. People get an instant impression of us. How we carry ourselves, look, and speak triggers subconscious snap judgments and conscious evaluations. When that personal presentation comes across as authentic leadership it is perceived as what we call executive presence.

The Essence of a Leader

Executive presence is an essence, not an off-the-shelf product. People see it in your eyes, feel it in your handshake, and it resonates deep inside of them when they hear you speak. You can’t fake it, and without it you may not make it in the competitive business arena where valuable promotions separate the followers from the leaders.

Grace and Gravitas

While this multifaceted energy of executive presence is hard to define it is easy as pie to recognize. One of the ways that we know it when we see it is that the person exudes an elegant grace combined with a powerful gravitas. What do I mean by that?

  • Grace is the ability to respond with poise under pressure – which is the opposite of how ordinary people react when they encounter stress, fear, and unexpected and unfamiliar situations.
  • Gravitas comes from the word gravity, and it means that you are centered and grounded. No matter what hits you, you remained rooted in professionalism. When the waves rock the boat you maintain a steady hand. In the midst of uncertainty you’ll have clear-eyed focus.

Grace and gravitas working together create a rare balance that is totally charismatic and extends beyond the workplace into every facet of life – 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Your Grace and Gravitas is Within

So how do you develop executive presence defined by grace and gravitas? You have to go deep inside yourself and find your center of gravity – your spiritual core. You need to remove the preconceptions that you aren’t worthy or qualified to lead. To find poise under pressure you have to disengage those emotional triggers from childhood that hold you back with fear or apprehension. Overcome the psychological barriers to success and tap into your positive, limitless subconscious mind.

Is it easy? No, it requires commitment and passion. Does it come naturally? Yes, once you learn how to put the process into motion in practical steps. That’s why I created the executive presence-building Predictable Promotion™ System. Your executive presence is there inside you, just waiting to be discovered – so why postpone it any longer?


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Sarah Hathorn is a leadership development mentor, executive presence coach, image and branding consultant, public speaker & author. She is the founding CEO of her own successful company, Illustra Consulting, and the creator of the proprietary Predictable Promotion™ System.

1-800-267-3245 | www.illustraconsulting.com
Copyright © 2013, Sarah Hathorn, AICI CIP, CPBS

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