It’s Not About Attendance: Do You Have Presence in the Office?

Contribution Organizational leadership Respect


As a CEO I sit in all kinds of meetings within and outside the company. It is interesting to observe the concepts of being “present” and having “presence.”

In the Character Triangle, and also in my June 18 blog,  I talk about the importance of being “present” as fundamental to Respect.   At the same time I’ve noticed that having “presence” is also important for rapidly developing respect from others. This is what I look for from myself and others at meetings relative to the attribute of “presence”:

Who enters the room making eye contact? Do they firmly shake hands while looking  directly at participants?

Are they great listeners by asking great questions that contribute to the group?

Do they listen by taking great notes?

Do they make eye contact with the entire room when they talk AND listen?

Do they sum up key points that the group values and builds upon?

Do they have great command of language and use words with precision?

Do they generously share and contribute without dominating and becoming overbearing? Or do people tune them out?

 If we are capable and skilled at the above we will have presence at those meetings.

Being present and having presence are foundation elements for having and giving respect. How do you and I score ourselves on these factors? Here’s homework for you and me:  at your next meeting consciously work on applying the elements described above. See if it makes a difference to how you and others felt about our contribution.

Live in the Triangle,