Michelle Lederman: Grow Your Network and Influence with the 11 Laws of Likability | E194

Michelle Lederman: Grow Your Network and Influence with the 11 Laws of Likability | E194

Michelle Lederman: Grow Your Network and Influence with the 11 Laws of Likability | E194

‘It’s not what you know, it’s who you know.’ We’ve all heard that cliché phrase, but any successful person will preach the importance of a strong network. Building relationships is vital to your personal and professional growth, and there are certain steps you can take to make yourself more likable in order to make those connections.

Michelle Tillis Lederman CPA, MBA, PCC, was named one of Forbes’ Top 25 Networking Experts and is the founder and CEO of Executive Essentials, a training company that provides customized communications, leadership coaching, and training programs.

In this episode, Hala and Michelle dive into what makes somebody likable and how that differs from person to person. Michelle explains the dangers of networking for need and how we can approach networking more personally to build more meaningful long-lasting connections. They also discuss the laws of likability, the three types of listening, and the different levels of connectors.


Topics Include:


– Michelle’s early desire to become a teacher

– Pivoting from finance to teaching

– Defining likability

– Relationship networking

– The problem with networking for need

– What does it mean to be disliked?

– Laws of likability

– Discovering authenticity

– Staying authentic while adjusting your energy

– Figuring out what is likable about you

– It’s not about you – it’s about the relationship

– The three types of listening

– Verbal, vocal, and visual community

– Minimizing language

– Mood memory

– The value of referrals

– Different levels of connectors

– And other topics…


Michelle Tillis Lederman is a top networking expert and author. Her clients include government officials, scholars, and Fortune 500 companies, like Madison Square Garden, Citi, Johnson & Johnson, and Ernst & Young. Michelle is a firm believer in the power of relationships and has dedicated her career to teaching people how to communicate with confidence, clarity, and connection.

She has delivered seminars internationally for fortune 500 companies, universities, high schools, and nonprofit organizations. She has written multiple books on likability and networking, including The Connector’s Advantage and The 11 Laws of Likability.


Resources Mentioned:


Michelle’s Twitter: https://twitter.com/mtlederman

Michelle’s Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/mtlederman/

Jim Kwik: From Broken Brain to Kwik Brain – Learn Faster and Improve Your Memory | E190: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/young-and-profiting-with-hala-taha/id1368888880?i=1000581371922


Sponsored By:


JustWorks – Take a look at Justworks’ transparent pricing by visiting justworks.com/pricing

Lands End – Go to business.LandsEnd.com/YAP and use promo code YAP for 25% off your first product.

Indeed – Visit Indeed.com/YAP to start hiring now.

Shopify – Sign up for a free trial at shopify.com/profiting

Swag.com – Go to swag.com/yap and get 10% off your order

The Jordan Harbinger Show – Check out jordanharbinger.com/start for some episode recommendations


Connect with Young and Profiting:


Text Hala: https://youngandprofiting.co/TextHala or text “YAP” to 28046


Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

[00:00:00] Michelle Lederman: One of the things that we have to accept is that not everybody's gonna like us. And for somebody like me, that was a really hard thing to accept because I wanted everyone to like me. But what you can do is enable people to see what is likable about you. I get a lot of I can't do this, or I'm not good at this.

[00:00:19] And those are conclusion based statements. I want everyone out there right now to think about for the rest of today as you speak. Are your statements action based or judgment based? I'm not a good public speaker. Judgment. I haven't figured out how to do this yet. Possibility.

[00:00:39] Hala Taha: What is up Young and Profiteers? You're listening to Yap, Young and Profiting podcasts where we interview the brightest minds in the world and turn their wisdom into actionable advice that you can use in your daily life. I'm your host, Hala Taha, aka the podcast Princess. Thanks for listening and get ready to [00:01:00] listen, learn and profit.

[00:01:13] Hey Michelle, Thanks for being on Young and Profiting podcast. 

[00:01:17] Michelle Lederman: I'm excited to be here. 

[00:01:19] Hala Taha: Young and Profiteers. Today on the show we have Michelle Tillis Lederman. Michelle is a people expert, a motivational speaker, CEO and founder of Executive Essentials, a firm that runs communication and leadership programs for businesses and professionals alike.

[00:01:33] Her company has worked with household brands like Deloitte, Johnson and Johnson, and JP Morgan, and she's been featured in the Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, NPR, and CBS amongst other major publications. Michelle is also the author of numerous bestselling books centered around likability, communication and network.

[00:01:50] And Michelle Likability is literally one of my favorite topics. In fact, my first episode ever on Young and Profiting five years ago was with Dr. Jack Schafer on the [00:02:00] topic of likability. And needless to say, I'm super excited for this conversation because you are one of the top experts in the world on likability and networking.

[00:02:08] So thanks for being on again. And so let's start here. You are an entrepreneur and you are top expert in your field, but at one point you worked in corporate and actually in finance. So let's start here. I wanna get to know you a little bit better. I want my listeners to know you a little bit better. And based on my research, you became disheartened by the lack of leadership and communication at your job.

[00:02:29] And at some point you were the only woman on the training floor and on the venture capital team, and you realized that at heart you were a teacher. And that's when you really start to go out on your own and start to design your dream career and what you call now as a connection creator. So tell us about how you ended up on this path and the events and thought process that led up to you becoming an entrepreneur.

[00:02:51] Michelle Lederman: You really did do your homework. I'm so impressed you hit a lot of the things. The funny thing is I wanted to be a teacher, when I was in sixth grade. Mrs. Norma Green with her word of the day [00:03:00] just inspired me to wanna be a teacher. But as somebody who grew up without financial security. I thought, that's just not gonna get me where I wanna go, to be young and profitable.

[00:03:09] So I pursued a career in finance and a lot of that was because I was good at it. And a lot of times we choose our careers based on our skill set, but not necessarily our passion. And yes, I followed finance. I was the only woman on the venture capital team. I was the only woman at all times on the trading floor with the exception of the secretary.

[00:03:27] And I was often a mistake to be a secretary, yet good times finance. In the nineties, I was managing about a hundred million dollars for the bank. And we had people coming in left and right saying, invest in my hedge fund and pitching me. And I thought, this is not how you do it. And really wanted to just say, Could I explain to you how to get money from me?

[00:03:47] And that's honestly where the work started. At the same time being on that trading floor and seeing how the leadership was and how the communication wasn't. Those two areas just said, There's something here. And I [00:04:00] got to start to be what I always wanted to be, which is a teacher, but just in a way that affected not the youth of America, but the adults of it.

[00:04:09] Hala Taha: Yeah. And so did you have any educational background in psychology or anything like that? Because if you were in finance, it's such a big jump, so I'm just wondering how you made that jump. 

[00:04:20] Michelle Lederman: So I was an accounting major, but I was a writing and a communications minor. So it wasn't that I had no education there, I just didn't think that was the major career.

[00:04:28] So that was my area of interest and passion. So I did have that education, but what I did and what anybody else out there can do is I am a continuous learner. So when I was working on the trading floor is actually when my transition started. My boss became the CEO of the Tokyo branch of the bank and he said, Michelle, go hire a coach and go out to Japan and teach everybody how to deal with me.

[00:04:51] That literally was his instruction. And I was like, Okay. So I hired some coach, paid her a ridiculous amount of money compared to what I was making. Then did [00:05:00] everything she did and then some. So at the end of the week, and here's a key thing for anybody who's thinking about making that leap out of corporate and into entrepreneurship. That self confidence to know you can do it.

[00:05:10] At the end of the week, I went to the CEO and I said, I can do that. And he said, Okay, but you still have to do everything else. And I said, Okay. And he then sent me to take classes, work with Myles Martel, who, that name doesn't mean anything to you, but he actually was the coach for Reagan and Rumsfeld back in those days.

[00:05:28] So very prestigious speaker who helped me ho hone my skills. Anytime he wanted a class taught, he would say, Michelle, go take a class and then go teach us. So he literally paid for my education.

[00:05:41] Hala Taha: That's amazing. So basically your corporate job allowed you to excel in this new path and you took it as the opportunity I talk about this all the time on the podcast.

[00:05:51] The opportunities set B you had one role that you were paid for and one that you were passionate about, but they let you explore those opportunities. And honestly, when you're in a corporate [00:06:00] job, there's nothing better than a corporate job that allows you to expand outside of what you were hired for.

[00:06:05] Michelle Lederman: Absolutely. And one of my vendors, so I was doing risk management and one of my vendors needed a director of marketing. And I was like, Oh my God, all my friends from business school have been laid off. Tell me who you need, know the connector mindset that I have. And I'm like, I'll know somebody. And we're going through, they're telling me, they're talking to me, and I'm like, wait a minute.

[00:06:22] Are you offering me a job? And they're like, Yeah. And I'm like, I dunno. Anything about marketing, They're like, Yes, you do, Michelle, when somebody believes in you. And that's what I talk about, connected leadership. Because when you believe in somebody else, you elevate them to live up to those expectations.

[00:06:40] And so I said to them, I'm like, Okay, but I'm doing this business on the side and this is a short term plan. And oh, and I promised my boss I'd still go to Japan. And they're like, That's fine. We'll wait. It's okay. You can take days off. And I was like, Okay, I'm sold. And so I went to this startup risk management firm and I got my appointment to NYU.

[00:06:59] [00:07:00] So I would leave early on Tuesdays and Thursdays. My first client I landed was JP Morgan. 

[00:07:04] Hala Taha: Amazing. 

[00:07:05] Michelle Lederman: I would say Hey, I'm gonna take tomorrow off because I'm gonna go teach a JP Morgan. They'll be like, Good luck. 

[00:07:10] Hala Taha: That's so supportive. Super cool. 

[00:07:13] Michelle Lederman: And it's about transparency. It's about communication and it's also about fully showing up for them as well.

[00:07:20] Hala Taha: I can totally agree. When I was building this podcast and later the agency, I worked at Disney, and they were really supportive too. They didn't mind, I used to do interviews at lunch, but that's because I rocked my day job. You can't like slack on your day job. Then they're not gonna want you to do that.

[00:07:33] They know that actually side hustles can make you feel more energetic, more happy, more like positive. And that's always good for employees to be more productive, right? So a good employer knows that following your passion and encourage people to do that is actually a good thing for productivity. All right, so let's get to the meat and potatoes of the interview because likability is my favorite topic out of all human behavior topics, and you have a very popular [00:08:00] book called The 11 Laws of Likability.

[00:08:02] And in it you talk about how to discover your most likable characteristics, start conversations, keep them going, make lasting positive impressions. And so I think it's the perfect guide for networking. So let's start off with the very basics, some definitions. How do you define likability and how does likability relate to networking?

[00:08:20] Michelle Lederman: So the funny thing is, and I'm gonna take that second question first. I didn't wanna use the word networking in the book the publishers made me, and they're like, It's for SEO. You have to have networking on the cover. It has to be in the title. And I said, But that's only half of it. They're like what's the other half?

[00:08:34] I said relationships. And so I actually coined the phrase relationship networking. And it's a way to shift how we think about this thing called networking, which has the word work in it. Which makes people not wanna do it. And we have all of these yucky associations with it. And so I just say that it's another way of making friends and likability is in all of us. It is self defined and is it is other defined because we can't say, Here's the [00:09:00] qualities that make somebody likable.

[00:09:01] One publisher wanted to actually change the title of my book to 50 Ways to Make Yourself Likable. I'm like, that's not what I'm teaching, because you can't make anybody like you. But what you can do is enable people to see what is likable about you and to understand that what is likable about you for you is gonna be different than for the guy on the corner.

[00:09:20] Hala Taha: I love that. And there's so much actionable advice in terms of how we can do that. But before we get into that, you often say that people do business with people they like. That's actually the subtitle, I believe, of your book. Can you talk to us about why likability is a big factor in business?

[00:09:35] Because usually people think likability, they think friends, social, but why is that a big factor in business? 

[00:09:40] Michelle Lederman: It's huge and there's so many statistics to back it up. Likability is one of the six factors of influence, according to Robert Cialdini. When you are likable, you are seen as more creditworthy, more trustworthy.

[00:09:53] Your ideas are received and acted upon. So you are listened to, you are more [00:10:00] influential. You are seen as more innovative because you get credit for the ideas that other people than expand on because of the connection you have with them. They receive them, they morph them, they play with them, and then it's Oh, that was Michelle's idea.

[00:10:12] So all of those things about influence, impact, innovation being listened to likability also affects things like promotions and getting the job and getting the sale and getting the referral. Because all business is relationship business and we often don't work for a company. We work for a person. We don't quit a company.

[00:10:31] We quit a person. When we are hiring somebody, when we are thinking about who we wanna work with, it is who. Because a lot of people can do the same thing and the differentiator is who that person is. And do I trust that they'll have my back? Do I trust that they'll step up when I ask for something? 

[00:10:47] Hala Taha: Another thing that's often confused when it comes to networking and things like that, is that like networking, this thing that you do for some ultimate outcome. I'm networking because I wanna get a job. I'm [00:11:00] networking because I wanna find a husband, whatever it is. Why do you think that we need to not have this kind of approach to networking?

[00:11:09] Michelle Lederman: So you saw me like cringe when you said that. 

[00:11:12] Hala Taha: Yes. 

[00:11:12] Michelle Lederman: I hate the whole networking for need. And that's why I hate the word because I just want you to connect. I just want you to build relationships. The ones that you want to, because those are the ones that are gonna get you where you wanna go. And the idea is that it's not strategic.

[00:11:28] And I know we have to be more intentional, but there's a difference between strategic and intentional. I can intentionally put myself in situations to be curious about somebody else, right? Law of curiosity is one of the laws of likability to be interested in somebody else, but I don't have to be thinking you can't do anything for me.

[00:11:44] So next, if I'm enjoying my conversation with you. That's all that matters because I don't know who you are connected to. I don't know who you went to college with, who your neighbor is, who your next door cousin well removed is. Because when real [00:12:00] connection happens, those other connections extend more easily.

[00:12:03] So when it comes to relationship networking, there's three shifts I want people to make. The first shift is from talking about business. I always say, Please don't get right down to business. Everyone hears that phrase. Let's get right down to business. No, please don't . Get right down to personal. Get right down to the things that you really enjoy talking about.

[00:12:23] Because when we connect on what we like to do rather than what we do. That's where connection forms, cuz connections are about. Common people, places, causes, values, experiences, interests and not jobs. So get away from just talking business, talk about anything. Shift number two is from short term to long term, which is what you were saying. It is not about now or need.

[00:12:48] It is about relationship building and having that mindset. And the third is from, it's not about me, which is the other thing that you are saying. A lot of times when we're out there it's what do I need and who do I wanna [00:13:00] connect with? But it's not about them either cuz that's just, it's about me in reverse.

[00:13:04] It's about the relationship. I call it the dance, the exchange. And how do you add value for both sides. 

[00:13:11] Hala Taha: Yeah, those are some great pointers. And one more kind of foundational question before we move onto some of the actual laws. And that's this idea of being disliked. What does it mean to be disliked and what happens?

[00:13:27] Like, why is it so hard to be around people that we don't like? 

[00:13:30] Michelle Lederman: I wouldn't know about being disliked. No . . Actually, one of the reasons I wrote the book was because I had very polarizing responses from people. They love me or they hated me, but there wasn't a lot in between, and I didn't know what I was doing.

[00:13:45] So one of the things that we have to accept is that not everybody's gonna like us. And for somebody like me. That was a really hard thing to accept because I wanted everyone to like me. And you asked before about the importance of [00:14:00] likability, and we talked about some of the things, but it also has things like, you won't get sued for malpractice when your patients like you.

[00:14:07] And there's all there's so many ways that it stretches into our results, but we have to accept that not everybody's gonna like you, but not liking you doesn't mean they dislike you. And I wanna give a, people can be neutral, people can be indifferent, and that's okay. And giving them space to maybe build a little bit of positivity over time.

[00:14:30] And I always say, appreciate the differences, accept and focus on those that do wanna be in your orbit. 

[00:14:37] Hala Taha: Let's hold that thought and take a quick break with our sponsor.

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[00:19:28] You can't make everybody like you and I'm similar to you. I feel like when you're confident and bubbly, like some people just can't stand that. You know what I mean? And so I'm like you, I feel like people either love me or hate me, but like you said, you can't win 'em all. All you can do is just try your best and to be your best to be likable.

[00:19:46] So speaking of being bubbly, me and you are both very bubbly, happy people. Do you actually need to be bubbly and perky to be likable? 

[00:19:53] Michelle Lederman: Oh God, no. And actually I think sometimes it's worked against me. I did a talk called You the Brand, and [00:20:00] I had, it was at my alma mater Lehigh and I was greeting people as they came in because that's me.

[00:20:05] Hi, welcome. At the end of it, I let people tell me what they think of me and I say, They don't have to be nice. And I asked them if that changed because we talk about how perceptions don't change very easily. And this woman raised her hand and she said, I almost turned around and left.

[00:20:20] She said, you just came on too strong. And she said, I'm glad I didn't. Now I get it. But what she said was, you realized it because I think she physically backed up. So what we talk about is productive energy. So one of the laws of likability is the law of energy. And it is not about bubbly and perky and oh my God, I wanna slap that smile off your face.

[00:20:42] But it's about productive energy. And what is the valuable energy in the moment of my exchange with you? So are you in a place that needs a calming energy? Are you in a space that needs a validating energy? Do you need somebody to talk you off the ledge or to pump you up? And we [00:21:00] talk about different energy responses and what are typical and what are productive.

[00:21:04] Hala Taha: So I think this is gonna relate to what I'm about to say next. So the law of authenticity, right? This driver of being authentic in what you're talking about, energy right now, like we need to read the room, but if you are like bubbly, perky, and the person next to you is maybe really calm, do you become inauthentic to then try to get down to their level?

[00:21:26] What are you saying we do in terms of our energy? Do we match other people or do we just stay authentic to ourselves? 

[00:21:32] Michelle Lederman: So we wanna meet somebody? Where they are or just over or just under, depending on if their energy's in a productive place. If they're just somebody who's really chill and you come on super strong, you're not gonna mesh, but it's not like you're gonna be like, Yeah, I'm chill.

[00:21:48] That's not authentic . So if somebody is a little calmer, I might be like, Oh yeah, I might bring my volume down a little bit. I might talk a little bit slower, but it's still gonna have [00:22:00] animation and it's still gonna have my hands moving, but maybe they won't be moving quite as big. So it's just about flexing.

[00:22:08] And that's the temporary momentary adjustment of your style to enable that connection to happen, to enable that likability to be seen where it's not being drowned out by the boldness of a personality. 

[00:22:23] Hala Taha: Okay, so let's move on to what I just mentioned, this law of authenticity. How can we discover what is authentic to ourselves?

[00:22:33] Michelle Lederman: That's a really great question and that, just giving you an overview of the book, the first four chapters are about before the conversation, right? Getting our head in the game. And so authenticity, and I'll just name the four, authenticity, self-image, the law of perception, and the Law of Energy, they work together.

[00:22:49] So how you see yourself is how others are going to see you. You can drive it, but you have to like you first. So when we think about authenticity, it's a [00:23:00] little bit about that inner voice and how are we treating ourself and how do we see ourselves? And I have a technique, it's actually in the second chapter of the law of self image about being your own best friend.

[00:23:10] Because sometimes we need to shift that language that we're using with ourself. And I've had people come up to me saying I'm just a jerk and so I'm being authentic. And I'm like, yeah, authenticity is not a excuse or permission to be a jerk. Authenticity's understanding our unique charms, our strengths and the things that work for and against us. And it's about deciding about what to bring forward in any given situation. But also it's about self-acceptance because authenticity like, okay, we just said you know, we're bold, we're perky, we're loud, I'm loud. You guys told me I had to turn the volume down of my microphone before we got on this podcast cuz it was like too loud, Michelle.

[00:23:52] So I have to learn that sometimes I need to just bring the volume down. I need to slow the speech. That doesn't mean I'm being [00:24:00] inauthentic. It means I'm being adaptable for somebody else to show that it's not just about me, it's about the relationship. And that's one of the shifts we're making. 

[00:24:09] Hala Taha: Yeah. And so I know that it's important throughout this whole process, like you said, this is all about figuring out what's likable about you because not everything about you is gonna be likable.

[00:24:20] So how do we go about figuring out what it is that people like about us.

[00:24:25] Michelle Lederman: Here's the really simple thing in life is feedback is a really wonderful piece of information. And you'll laugh at me, but it's something we do in my household quite often. And when we're recording this is right after the high holidays where we think about what we wanna be forgiven for and what we wanna be better at in the new year.

[00:24:45] And this is we have family feedback where we'll say Hey, what do you wanna work on this year? Or, Hey, this is the thing you should work on this year. And so you have people in your life that will give you this good information. Your job is already giving you this information. Ask [00:25:00] questions, ask for specifics.

[00:25:02] Ask like a diverse group. So I always say, and I have an exercise in the book for like exactly how to do this. Ask frenemies and exes and you'll get some really great information. But really be careful about what you ask them. Don't just say, how would you describe me? Because then it gives them free rein to be mean, especially if they're.

[00:25:21] Not maybe your allies and advocates. Instead say, what is one quality that you'd admire in me? Or What is one strength that you think I bring to the table? And so that you can start to see the positive things that even people who don't wanna say nice things about you will still say about you. 

[00:25:37] Hala Taha: Yeah, I love that dip.

[00:25:38] Ask your frenemies and ask your exes cuz you know that they're gonna give it to you. They're gonna let you know, especially what they don't like about you. That's funny. So in your book you write that building strong relationship starts with abandoning the conventional me based thoughts. You say it's not about you, it's about the relationship.

[00:25:57] You alluded to this in the beginning, but can you further explain [00:26:00] why it's not about me or you? It's about the actual relationship.

[00:26:04] Michelle Lederman: The relationship has. It's like its own entity and how you have an exchange with somebody. How you think about your interactions with somebody. It has a life of its own.

[00:26:15] And when you think about shifting away from me, People always say, What are the most important laws in the book? Or they ask me for one, and I always give them two because I can't choose. And we already started talking about one with authenticity, because you cannot connect, you cannot be likable unless you're being real.

[00:26:30] And people can feel them as they can see it. So authenticity is kinda like the foundational thread through all the other laws. And the other law I always say is love of giving. And so when we talk about the relationship having a life of its own, if you come into it with this mindset of giving to give first, to give often because you want to, not without expectation of something in return or should say not with expectation of something in return.

[00:26:53] I will tell you the original title of that chapter was the Law Reciprocity. And it just wasn't sitting right [00:27:00] because when I talk about that content, I'm not talking about give to get. I'm not talking about quid pro quo. And that's why we changed the title. So the law of giving, because it really is that mindset of how do I add value to you?

[00:27:15] How do I show you that? I hear you, that I'm focused on you, that I'm curious about you, that I care about you, that I wanna support you, that I wanna help you. And when you feel that from me, you wanna bring it back. But it's not because, right? It's not like I have to, It's I want to. And sometimes, and oftentimes when we think about giving, we can give in one direction, but we receive from another.

[00:27:40] And so that mindset of giving, it has to be always there for relationships to have foundation to grow on. And don't worry if it feels really one directional in either direction. Because if you bring that mindset to your relationships, even if sometimes you are the receiver, it gives you that permission.[00:28:00] 

[00:28:00] Hala Taha: I have to say that like I hear this theme all the time in human behavior and gaining influence, it's really about showing that you care and being a caring, like being a good person, caring about other people, wanting to give to other people, having good intentions. To your point, not having this is the exact outcome that I want and I'm only friends with you for this specific reason.

[00:28:20] It's just actually caring about people. And to further show that you care about people, you also should be curious about them, right? So you talk about this law of curiosity in your book and people, they like to be asked questions about their lives. And I heard that when people ask you, like when you're meeting somebody and they're like, What do you do?

[00:28:41] You actually skirt right around that question and you tell them what you did that weekend. So I wanna dig into the questions we should ask and all that kind of stuff to drive curiosity, but why do you do that? That's such a great tip. 

[00:28:53] Michelle Lederman: One, because I have no idea how to answer the question of what I do.

[00:28:56] I'm like it depends on the day of the week. I'm like, [00:29:00] and so I always struggle with that elevator pitch or that like tight little sentence that says, this is what I do. And I just never liked that question. And it goes back to the fact that's not interesting and that's not what's gonna make me connect with somebody, and that's not where I wanna start my relationship.

[00:29:15] So when they say, What do you do? I say for fun. Or I say this weekend, or I might say, For who? Because that's a really another way to put that mindset out of what do I do for someone? 

[00:29:29] So yes, I love that. 

[00:29:30] Hala Taha: And it goes back to your point of not getting straight down to business.

[00:29:33] It's like instead of getting straight down to business, you're like, No, I'm gonna tell you something personal about me. And that's because maybe you're trying to find common ground. So maybe we can just switch and talk. This law of familiarity and similarity because I have a feeling that you bringing up those things also enables you to start to find common ground with the new people that you meet, right?

[00:29:56] Michelle Lederman: So you're now talking about the anatomy of a conversation, and that's the middle part of the book. [00:30:00] So we talk about the law of curiosity, the law of similarity, the law of listening, and the law of familiarity or mood, memory, I should say. Mood familiarity is at the end. Mood memory. So when we think about the anatomy of a conversation and people are like, especially I get, I have a lot of content for introverts.

[00:30:17] If they're introverts that are listening out there right now, are going, Yuck. No, thank you, not me. I'm gonna just not listen to this episode. I gotta tell you that introverts have some of the most innate skills when it comes to connection. And to understand that when we say be curious or we say be social, we don't mean social butterfly.

[00:30:34] We don't mean work the room, we mean put yourself in the position to be curious about one other human. In any environment, in any space. And introverts are really good at that. They're great at asking questions. They're great at listening. They're great at the one to one. So don't worry about what it looks like for anybody else and do it your way, first of all.

[00:30:53] And if you say, I don't know how to start a conversation, my answer is always start by being curious and ask a [00:31:00] question you actually wanna know the answer to. And then for the introvert, I'm gonna give you a little more of a cue here. I also want you to ask a question that you are willing to answer.

[00:31:09] Because a lot of times with introverts, we'll ask and will ask. And it becomes an interrogation. It could, right? Because you're doing this great thing of being curious and drawing information in. But we also need a little self disclosure. And when I refer to the dance, this is what I mean the dance in that conversation of ask and listen, right?

[00:31:27] Love listening. You gotta listen. So you can probe and ask more questions, but then listen and share. So we start with the ask. We then go to listen. Listen and probe. Listen and share. And through that we're looking for that similarity because people like them. Easy people like them.

[00:31:43] Now this is great. It isn't great in some ways, but it's great in some ways. What I wanna challenge people with is don't go for the obvious. We're both women, we're both of this age, we're both of this background, We're both of this area, whatever view, whatever [00:32:00] industry, right? Those are simple. I want you to be a detective and try to figure out what's not obvious about what we have in common.

[00:32:08] Those common values, experiences, causes, passions, dreams destinations, right? All of those things. And so it's a little bit like a scavenger hunt, and that curiosity then really drives a conversation, but we actually need to be willing to give information as well. 

[00:32:24] Hala Taha: Yeah. And I know that you often talk about three types of listening, and I was just talking about this.

[00:32:30] Do you know who Jim Kwik is? 

[00:32:31] Michelle Lederman: Yes. 

[00:32:33] Hala Taha: So I just had Jim Kwik on my show and we were talking about memory, and it's one of these likability factors, which is showing that you care, right? That you care enough to even remember somebody's name. So it's not just enough to listen. You actually have to recall information and throughout the conversation prove that you're actively listening and that you care about them enough to actively listen.

[00:32:57] So I thought these three types of [00:33:00] listening really elaborates on this point, if you wanna explain what that is. 

[00:33:03] Michelle Lederman: Absolutely. Okay. We got listening in, listening out and listening intuitively. So listening in is where we are 80% of the time. What it means is we're taking in the information and we're putting it through the filter of how does this apply to me and what can I share?

[00:33:16] And the reason why listening in is great is because it gives us that enabled, I used to say ability to say the me, you two, but now me Too has a whole different meeting, so I can't say that anymore, but the idea that you're sharing something that I might have had a similar experience, so that law of similarity exists.

[00:33:32] And so when we listen in, we're listening to find those moments of similarity and to have a share and to create some kind of common connection. And so it might be, if I say, what's your favorite color? And you say blue, I might say mine's pink. And so I'm listening in and I'm sharing something and that's fine.

[00:33:52] Listening out is about from their perspective. So in is my perspective out is their perspective. So if you said, My favorite color is blue, I [00:34:00] might probe and say why is that your favorite color? Or What is it about blue that you like? And I'm so trying to understand more about your choice of blue.

[00:34:07] And so I'm listening outward and trying to get a deeper understanding from their perspective. Now, listening intuitively is something that we do probably the least, and it's something that we wanna be careful with, because sometimes it could be like, a little bit too much. Because what we're doing is we're listening with our eyes and our ears.

[00:34:27] We're picking up on things that aren't said. And when we talk to something, they say, My favorite color's blue. You might say, I get the sense that you find blue really calming. And just even as you said blue, I saw your body just relaxed. Does blue give you that sense of calm? And so we're checking our assumptions, but we're saying, I'm picking up on something from you.

[00:34:48] I'm feeling something. And so when you listen intuitively, it's to share what you're getting, but also to check in that you're getting it right. 

[00:34:57] Hala Taha: So one of the conflicting things that I have in [00:35:00] my mind as you're talking about this, is I learn a lot about negotiation and how to gain influence and all, like interviewing all these experts.

[00:35:06] And Chris Voss came on my show and he was talking to me about the fact that when you are probing, asking questions, he says that you actually shouldn't make it about yourself ever. So if somebody says, My color is blue, and you're like, Oh, my blue's, my favorite color too, or that you're not supposed to bring it back to being about yourself.

[00:35:29] And I've gotten this feedback where I remember my ex-boyfriend used to be like, I can never say anything with you without you saying you've done it too. Or you always relate it back to you. And that can seem arrogant or inconsiderate. So what are your thoughts on that? Like how do we balance being relatable and saying, Yeah, I've done this too, without making it all about you.

[00:35:47] Michelle Lederman: I think it's a really interesting point. I don't think it should be never bringing it back to yourself, because then what comes out is, Hey, I don't know anything about you and I don't feel comfortable with you because you weren't sharing and I shared and I was vulnerable and I [00:36:00] gave you trust and you gave me nothing.

[00:36:01] So now there's a difference between me just trying to connect and me trying to negotiate. So I'm gonna take the negotiation out of it because when you're negotiating, that's a whole different dynamic. But when we are just building a relationship, absolutely it comes back to you at times. And that's what I mean by the dance.

[00:36:18] So when we are in that anatomy of a conversation and we're in the phase of listening, and you wanna balance those options of listen and probe to learn more, to, to do it from the listening out perspective, and then sprinkle in the listening in which is that commonality. And so it could be, oh, I support an animal charity as well.

[00:36:38] Have you heard of Straight From the Heart? Or have you heard of Homeless Pets for something? Or, And so no. And then you could be, So what charity do you work with? So you bring in a little bit of, Hey, this is mine. And do we have that in common? No. Okay. What's yours? Have I heard of that? Tell me more about yours.

[00:36:56] And so you'll create this balance where there is an [00:37:00] exchange of information. 

[00:37:02] Hala Taha: Yeah, and I think it's important to know if you're more of an overshare or a bragger versus the opposite. So like I am definitely on that spectrum of I like to tell people what I do and talk about it, and so I probably need to tone that down, whereas somebody who might not be as confident or might not ever share anything about themselves and needs to tone that up.

[00:37:22] So very good points here. Okay, so let's dive deeper into this listen intuitively concept. So it's not just about what we say. In your book, you say that the book Silent Messages says that 7% of somebody liking you is verbal, 38% is vocal, and 55% is visual. This came from psychologist Albert Mehrabian, who wrote Silent Messages.

[00:37:45] So again, 7% verbal, 38% vocal, 55% visual. And basically that means that the words that come out of our mouth have no impact or little impact on our likability. And to me it was really surprising to find out how much tone of [00:38:00] voice had to do with everything. Like I didn't even think that was really a fact.

[00:38:03] I've always heard like body language and things like that. So how do we keep our 3 V's, verbal, vocal, visual in sync when trying to make a good impression? And why is that important? 

[00:38:13] Michelle Lederman: So let me explain the statistic a little bit more because a lot of times this gets misinterpreted to the point where we say the words don't matter.

[00:38:20] Words matter. Absolutely. Words matter. When there's incongruency between these three things, the words are useless. So it's about the congruency between your verbal, vocal and visual. So if some teenager comes home and says, Everything is fine, those words are meaningless. If they are like slumped over, everything's fine.

[00:38:43] We know it's not. And even if the voice sounds the same, the body language is what is going to be what's most believable. And then the voice, and then the words. So first it's a congruency second, it's for face-to-face communications. When we are not face [00:39:00] to face, now we're face-to-face. We have a visual component.

[00:39:02] Even if we're not in person with phone, the visual aspect does not disappear. Even though you can't see them. The voice doubles, but the visual component is still there because if you think about it, you're visualizing where they are, what their bot, like you can say, is somebody slumped back. And I know if I go far from the mic, my voice will get far, so I won't slump.

[00:39:22] But if they're like, like this and they're really bored, we can pick up on, we can feel it in their voice. So the voice gives us a visual indication. Okay, so when we think about verbal, vocal, visual, how do we think about them? When I talk about verbal, I always say actionable, neutral, or positive language.

[00:39:43] And the reason that is, is because our words influence us and even in the way we say them. They will influence how somebody else responds to us. And then that response and it starts to amplify itself. So I never want you to think [00:40:00] that words don't matter. They do. Word choice is so important, but it's the congruency of these things working together.

[00:40:07] Hala Taha: Yeah. And I have to imagine that this also has to do with thinking positively. Going back to what you were saying with being authentic, if your start is that you speak badly to yourself, you think negatively about yourself, when show up in conversations and try to connect with people, I think they'll feel that energy that you feel these ways about yourself and they'll feel the unconfidence and the insecurities.

[00:40:33] And so it's so important to your point, to start with loving yourself and being your own best friend. 

[00:40:38] Michelle Lederman: Absolutely. And I'm thinking about hedging language, so that idea of minimizing what's coming out of your mouth. It's words like only just my opinion, simply, I'm not sure, but I was just all of that minimization that we put forth before we actually put our idea or our thought out there [00:41:00] says I'm not sure you believe you.

[00:41:01] So why should I believe you? So when we think about all of this verbal, vocal, visual and what we're putting out there, and the word choice, how you frame it to yourself matters. So for example, I have teenage boys, God help me. I have two kids in high school, , and I get a lot of I can't do this or I'm not good at this.

[00:41:26] And those are conclusion based statements. I want everyone out there right now to think about for the rest of today as you speak, are your statements action based or judgment based. And so saying, I can't do, this is a judgment saying. I haven't figured out how to do this yet, is an action. It gives you momentum.

[00:41:47] It gives you the opening, the possibility for learning it, for getting better. I'm not a good public speaker, judgment. I'm not a good public speaker yet, possibility action. The idea that we [00:42:00] can move on this. 

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[00:47:17] I think that was a really great example. It really helped put it all together for me. So I feel like this is a perfect segue to get into mood memory. This was one of the most fascinating concepts for me in your book. I'd never heard of it before. And so I'd love for you to break down this law and give us some key tips on how to make sure we leave every interaction with positive mood energy. 

[00:47:36] Michelle Lederman: This is the fourth phase of the anatomy of a conversation in the fourth chapter, in that middle section of the book. We were curious, we listened, we found some similarities, and then we get to the close of that conversation and that's where it could just fall off the cliff if we don't have an awareness of mood, memory. And mood memory is simply the idea that people remember far more how you made them feel than anything that you said. You walk away and like for example, [00:48:00] when I met you at Marshall Goldsmith's book launch party. I don't remember what we talked about. I just remember how I felt and the impression that you made, but I couldn't tell you what our conversation was really about.

[00:48:10] And so that's the idea behind mood memory. How did you make someone feel and do they feel like they wanna be in your presence again, or do they feel like they wanna run screaming from you? And the funny thing is, okay, I'm gonna tell you this, but my husband told me that when we were just friends, that I was really intense and like he wanted to be like, Whoa, like literally like backing for me

[00:48:34] And it was the shock to me because they asked me for business help. This is something I'm good at. So I dove in and I was like a machine gun trying to help them. And they were both like, Oh no, this is too much , him and his business partner. So understanding how you make somebody feel and looking for, remember, so all these things are intertwined.

[00:48:55] This is not a order. I do this one, then I do this one. All of these [00:49:00] laws are interrelated and they enable each other. And so that listening with your eyes and your ears and listening intuitively and being flexible. Being authentics, but adaptable to somebody else to enable them. You can see how these all come together in that mood memory moment.

[00:49:15] So when you are closing a conversation down, make sure you're not dismissing. Make sure you're not starting to be like, Yes, I'm done here, and . . . . Okay. Nice meeting you. And then we're moving on. But think about, in that last phase, what your follow up is, because the only way to get to the last half of the book, which is moving from conversation to connection while we talk about familiarity and giving in patience and all that, is to find the follow up.

[00:49:39] Because if you leave the conversation there, even if they feel good, if there's no follow up, then it's gonna go, ha-ha-ha. 

[00:49:47] Hala Taha: And I think people remember the beginning and the end mostly of conversations, not so much the middle. And to your point, it's really a lot of people start off great, they got a smile, a head tilt.

[00:49:57] They're, being their, on their best behavior. And then [00:50:00] to your point, towards the end, you might just get distracted and wanna move on to the next thing quickly. But you gotta remember to leave on a high note. What other really actionable tips can you give us to, to, cuz this mood memory thing is, I think really important and it's basically what your first impression was or for through that meeting.

[00:50:17] Michelle Lederman: Yeah, it's, it what's, what walks away with you. And you're right, the attention curve looks like a smiley face high at the beginning and high at the end, and it drops in the middle. Our goal in conversation in everything that we do is to make it more like a wave. So we have ups and downs in that attention curve.

[00:50:32] Okay, so when we're thinking about mood memory, think about the things that make you feel good. What makes somebody feel good? It's. Hey, they were interested in me. Hey, they were curious about me. Hey, we had something in common. Hey they told me that they were gonna follow up with this thing. Hey, they were gonna introduce me to that person.

[00:50:49] So as we think about finding that place that I could add value, that could be your follow up remembering something specifically that they said or something that they [00:51:00] wore. Like sometimes on a back of a card, I'll write, Oh, fun pink sweater with a cold shoulder , something to help, or where they sat or something that they asked me or just to bring it back.

[00:51:11] And that they feel listened to. They feel heard. They feel appreciated asking advice. Even in a first meeting, it could make somebody feel valuable and everybody wants to feel valuable. And so it could be like, Oh, you're from this area. We're visiting any great restaurants you'd recommend. Oh, thank you. I'm gonna let you know if we go there.

[00:51:31] And it's a light touch. It's a light follow up, but it keeps you connected. 

[00:51:35] Hala Taha: Yeah. I love those tips. All right, so funny enough, you mention for my listeners who may not know, Michelle's actually one of my clients. I run her LinkedIn management and I met her at another client events Marshall Goldsmith.

[00:51:48] And my last question for this section on likability before we move on to your new book, Connector's Advantage was something that I thought could tie it all together. So you met me, you liked me, [00:52:00] you hired me for something that you didn't even know you wanted. 

[00:52:03] Michelle Lederman: I think I didn't want it. I wasn't looking for it.

[00:52:06] Hala Taha: Yeah, . So let's talk about that interaction. I hadn't read your book at the time, but I did have some, a little bit of training with all the experts that I've met in my life. So what made you like me? And maybe we can tie some of these themes together. 

[00:52:20] Michelle Lederman: The funny thing is I don't remember a lot of the conversation, 

[00:52:22] and that's what I said.

[00:52:24] Hala Taha: Which is what we talked about. In the middle of the thing. You don't remember.

[00:52:27] Michelle Lederman: I don't remember a lot of the conversation. I remember thinking you had confidence, so you had a strong self image. You were being authentic, you were bringing some of those laws of likability, but you also shared your perception of me. I do remember you giving an indication of a fit, like you are the kind of person I wanna work with.

[00:52:49] And so that's part of the mood memory. You made me feel good about me as if I don't feel this way about everybody. You are special. Whether I was or not, it worked. Clearly, I'm your [00:53:00] client.

[00:53:00] Hala Taha: You are. 

[00:53:01] Michelle Lederman: So there was some of those elements and it didn't hurt that we were about the same height. And so standing in a party with a lot of people and having somebody to talk to eye makes you feel more connected.

[00:53:15] And so for those people that are really tall, are really short, and you have this challenge where you're like this or it doesn't feel as connected, Finding a way to get on eye level with somebody physically makes you feel more connected, that there's an impact to mood memory, that body language piece that is just, we don't even realize.

[00:53:32] But that whole idea of mirroring, part of mirroring is to make the body feel comfortable. And so those things happen naturally for us. 

[00:53:41] Hala Taha: Yeah, and I feel like I could come up with a couple other reasons, like just reflecting first, like you said, we're the same height, we're both from New Jersey, so familiarity, similarities, we both know Marshall, so we didn't talk about this yet. Maybe we can touch on it. This third party referral basically, even though he didn't, maybe he always [00:54:00] tells me and things like that, but just a fact that I worked for Marshall and I was at this party probably influenced it to a degree.

[00:54:07] So talk to us about that. How do third parties who kind of support you or recommend you, how does that impact your likability? 

[00:54:15] Michelle Lederman: 92% of people trust like recommendations or referrals. And you're four times more likely to buy when referred by somebody. So that's what Yelp and Amazon reviews and all those things are all about is having some validation that you're not alone in your thinking of something, but you are right. We were in a invite only environment of a community of people that was a trusted community. So just being in that community puts you at a place of open and willing to believe in the people who are in that space.

[00:54:49] So that helps. And that's the idea. There's a sub, there's a couple sub laws in the book. The law of association is one of them. And so within the law of famil, the law of similarity [00:55:00] is the law of association. It's that logic. If A, then B. If B then C, then A then C. He trusts you, then I trust you. And so even without a referral, knowing who you worked for, who you worked with, and I think I shared with you, you work with somebody else from the MG 100, Luke.

[00:55:18] And I called Luke before and I said, Hey, I just wanted, before I sign on the dotted line, tell me what you think. So getting that validation, it's a transfer of trust. 

[00:55:29] Hala Taha: And that's why it's so important to uphold such a great reputation and to treat all of your clients well, because they'll be your biggest advocates for your business referring you and things like that.

[00:55:38] And when you're recommended from someone else, it means so much more than you just saying that you're good. If somebody else says that you're good, that person's gonna believe them more than they'll believe you if you said the same thing. So really big points, great points to help us in our business.

[00:55:54] Let's in on these last few minutes, talk about your latest book, The Connector's Advantage. And Michelle, I think I'm gonna have you back [00:56:00] on to dive super deep into this topic because this is like the advanced course in networking. It goes one step further. It's a great continuation for anybody who has not read the 11 Laws of Likability.

[00:56:12] I highly recommend it. And then once to read that, go on to read the Connector's Advantage. So Michelle, you call yourself a connection creator and you start off the book saying that most people call you lucky. And you say you're not lucky, you're just a connector. So talk to us about that. What is a connector in your own words and why did you feel like you needed to write an entire book about the topic?

[00:56:33] Michelle Lederman: I was so excited to write this book. My husband actually is You're writing another book. Why? And I was like cause I have something I have to say. And he is Damn, that's a good answer. Cause writing a book is not easy, but this is a follow up of the 11 law is likability. And it's because a connector is somebody who prioritize their relationships in everything that they do.

[00:56:53] And that's the most simple way I can put it, is just prioritizing and putting relationships first and the [00:57:00] advantage, right? So I talk about the connector's advantage. It's faster, easier, better. Whatever it is you're working on, you're gonna get there faster, easier, and better. And that's why I tell that opening story of how I was working within five days of being laid off without actually even looking for a job.

[00:57:17] Because it isn't about. Oh, you right. I mean don't get me wrong, I believe that people have right time, right place, but I also believe people make the right time in the right place. And when you lay a foundation of connection and build relationships and you embody these laws of likability and these mindsets of a connector, your network is there when you need it.

[00:57:38] Hala Taha: Yeah, I know that Jordan Harbinger, who's a mutual friend, he calls his network, his job security insurance, . He's just I'll never be out of a job cuz I have an incredible network. And it's so true. So you actually say that there are a few different types of connectors based on my reading, it feels like connectors is basically a spectrum, starting from people who are non connectors to people who are [00:58:00] super connectors.

[00:58:01] I'm a super connector. I think you're a super connector. Tell us about the spectrum and where do you think people should be on the spectrum? 

[00:58:09] Michelle Lederman: That's an interesting question cause I don't think anyone should be anywhere, but what I want people to understand is you're already on it. There's very few people that are non connectors that don't believe in the value of relationships.

[00:58:19] I actually do have a coaching client who says, I don't believe in the value of relationships. And I was like, why did you hire me ? But the truth is she doesn't really feel that way. It's very interesting and I've been working with her for quite some time and she's fabulous. But when we think about, and this is a really great way to tease up for the next time I come on and I'm happy to come back.

[00:58:39] The connector spectrum starts with non connector, but then it very quickly moves to emerging connector. An emerging connector is somebody who understands the value of relationships, but doesn't necessarily know how to of really do it yet. A responsive connector is somebody who has a lot of incoming or even a little incoming, Hey, could you do this for me?

[00:58:56] Hey, could you introduce me to this person? And they respond with a [00:59:00] yes, but they're not initiating it yet. So as we climb up the spectrum, the greater the advantage becomes, the faster, the easier, the better, right? The further up the spectrum. So it depends on where you are, what where you wanna be and what your goals are of how far up you need to climb.

[00:59:15] I think getting to acting is a great place for anybody. The first lever to switch, to get from, responsive or emerging to acting is simply to be more initiative, to take more initiative by you coming up with who you can connect, you coming up with, how you can add value, you coming up with the ideas and not just responding, but going in both directions.

[00:59:35] That's an acting connector. That's a great landing place for people to strive for. The upper echelons is pulling the other lever, and the other lever is depth and breadth. So when we go deep within an industry, within a geography, within a demography, within a function, whatever it might be, when we go deep, that's a niche connector.

[00:59:54] My sister is the example I use in the book. Everybody in New Jersey, real estate and [01:00:00] real estate law knows my sister. She is not a lawyer, but she serves that market and runs the entire state and everybody in that industry knows her. And so that's a niche. Now she's starting to go broad. She's becoming more than just a niche connector.

[01:00:18] She's becoming a super connector. And a super connector is when we go broad. And that means I know people up and down the ladder, across industry, across demography, across geography, and if I cross my country's borders, I'm a global super connector or a global niche connector. So that's the spectrum. 

[01:00:34] Hala Taha: Now that you broke it down, I feel like I'm actually a niche connector.

[01:00:37] I'm probably in the podcasting and social world, but not necessarily still room to grow. Just good to know because we're having you back on to talk about this cuz there's way too much to cover in the last four minutes on just this book. So we're gonna have you back on Michelle. Go ahead. 

[01:00:51] Michelle Lederman: I'll tell you, there is a quiz, a three minute quiz to figure out where you are right now.

[01:00:55] You'll put it in the show notes and it's a 10 quick questions to say, Here's [01:01:00] where I'm at. And here's what I might do to keep going, and I would venture to say you might be a niche connector, but you are probably pretty close to being a super connector because it's not just who you know in your industry, but your clients brought in you.

[01:01:13] Hala Taha: Oh, that's true. I think I'm a stu. I might guess actually too. Exactly. You're right. You're right. I'm a super connector. What can I say? So Michelle, it's no wonder why you are one of Forbes top 25 networking experts in the world. Thank you so much for all your great wisdom today. We always end the show with two last questions, then we do something fun at the end of the year.

[01:01:33] So the first one is, what is one actionable thing my young and profiteers can do today to become more profitable tomorrow? 

[01:01:41] Michelle Lederman: Reach out to somebody if you wanna make it even bigger. Reach out to five people today. Send a note, send a text, comment on their profile, connect.

[01:01:51] Hala Taha: Love it. And what is your secret to profiting in life?

[01:01:56] Michelle Lederman: I tell you the first thing that came to my mind is never be hungry. [01:02:00] To understand that you have to choose what you wanna say yes to and what you wanna say no to. And if you don't feel literally, or figuratively hungry, you can really be very selective. Choose the clients and the engagements that are right for you, and that's where you will thrive.

[01:02:16] Hala Taha: So you're saying like, be so established and have such a good foundation that you can choose what you wanna do. 

[01:02:24] Michelle Lederman: That's really nice to not everybody can just start there, but I started with that mentality. I never started with, I'm desperate, I'm hungry, I need to say yes to anything and everything.

[01:02:36] I was always like, No, that's not a fit for me. So even at the beginning, get really clear on what you wanna say yes to and what you should say no. 

[01:02:44] Hala Taha: Awesome. Thank you so much, Michelle. This is such a great conversation. I know we're out of time. Can't wait to have you back to talk about connectors and really dive deep on that.

[01:02:52] And thanks for coming on Young and Profiting podcast. 

[01:02:56] Michelle Lederman: Thanks for having me. 

[01:02:59] Hala Taha: What [01:03:00] a great episode. The connection creator, Michelle Lederman YAP fam. I'm totally obsessed with topics like likability and networking because I think it's the secret weapon for our careers because when we do business, we do it through relationships.

[01:03:14] We select who we wanna engage with, we select who we come back to for more. And the ability to make a real connection and make other people like you is such a big part of your success or failure in business. Harnessing likability is all about uncovering what is authentically likable in ourselves and in the people we wanna connect with.

[01:03:34] So when you're networking, do your best to recognize what's likable about the other person as well as yourself. You can find out what's likable about others by asking good questions. Ask others about themselves more than you talk about yourself and then listen actively. People love to talk about themselves and they like those who listen to them.

[01:03:52] Do it. When you ask people about themselves, try to rely on open-ended questions that start with what, how, or why? And avoid questions that [01:04:00] people could just say yes or no to. What, how, or why? Questions prompt people to speak extensively about themselves, so you get to learn about them. So for example, some good questions are what do you do?

[01:04:11] What are you passionate about? How did you hear about this event? How do you guys know each other? Why did you choose this field of work? I suggest that you prepare some generic open-ended questions the next time you have a networking event, so you can practice this technique and get started off on the right foot.

[01:04:28] Once you get people talking, you're gonna get information, which is like currency in a relationship. Then you can draw on your similarities, which makes you an ally to the other person. Some other things to keep in mind when you're networking with other people is establishing solid eye contact, smiling often, nodding to indicate your approval of what the other person says.

[01:04:48] And you can also ask for advice. That's another good way to affirm other people's value. And the last thing I'll say is people love compliments. So keep it positive. Compliment the other person [01:05:00] sincerely, when you can. It's important to keep in mind that networking is about wanting to connect with others. It's not about getting a result or an outcome or achieving some sort of goal.

[01:05:10] In fact, when a lot of people hear the word networking, they cringe. They have a negative reaction to it because they think it's a test. They think of it as manipulation or winning people over. And let's face it, if you think of networking as something that is transactional or something that helps you achieve a goal, it's gonna feel like work.

[01:05:27] It's gonna feel like a chore, and it's gonna be hard to find the motivation to do it, and you won't be very good at it. So you need to lose that when people over transactional attitude, and instead try to seek genuine relationships that have no ulterior motive. So don't think networking with people, think connecting with people instead, after all, the only way to make yourself likable is by being honest and authentic, which leads me to the law of authenticity.

[01:05:51] Always be authentic, young and improvers. Here's the thing people can see right through phonies. To be likable, you have to exhibit your true self. [01:06:00] And if you present yourself artificially, people are gonna tell when you try to be something that you're not, you're gonna feel awkward and uncomfortable. And what you feel inside will reflect on the outside.

[01:06:10] People won't like you and they will feel that something's off. So no matter the setting show up as your true self. But here's the problem. If your true self is someone that you hate or someone that you're not proud of, you're not gonna be liked either. So you also need a strong self-image. Michelle's law of self-image says that if your self image is consistently positive, you're gonna attract other people's positive feelings.

[01:06:33] And if your self image is negative, it's gonna be difficult to get others to feel good about you. So be kind to yourself YAP fam, stop that negative self talk. And here's another homework assignment. I want you to sit down and write down your nice qualities. What do you like about yourself? Ask your friends and family for their opinions on your best qualities.

[01:06:53] If you're struggling to come up with a list. And if you have a hard time breaking the habit of negative self-talk, I have a whole episode [01:07:00] about that topic. It features Ethan Cross and its number 1 22, Harness your Internal Chatter. If you wanna learn more about how to stop negative self-talk, you should check out that episode after you listen to this podcast. While young and profiteers.

[01:07:13] I hope you enjoyed this episode as much as I did. And if you learn something new today, do me a favor and write us a five star review on Apple Podcasts or a rating on Spotify, or just drop us a review on your favorite podcast platform. We're almost at a thousand reviews on Apple, so I'm super thankful for everybody who's contributed.

[01:07:31] It's the number one way to thank me and everyone on the YAP team. You guys can also find me on Instagram and TikTok at yapwithhala. And we're also on YouTube if you like to watch podcasts, you can find us there. A special thank you to my production team and all their hard work to put on the show. I really appreciate you guys.

[01:07:48] This is your host, Hala Taha, signing off.[01:08:00] 

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