I’m not an executive, so why should I care about executive presence?

I am not an executive, so why do I care?

“I am not an executive, nor do I want to be an executive, so why do I care about executive presence?” is is a common response from new professionals when discussing executive presence. Or maybe you would say, “I am an entrepreneur. My start-up doesn’t have executives so executive presence doesn’t matter.”

I hear many variations of this same basic theme and my re- sponse is always the same executive presence matters! It matters in every industry, organization, job function, and role. From entry-level to the C-suite, this set of skills accounts for why som people are promoted over others, and why some entrepreneurs are able to raise capital while others struggle to get by.

Not yet convinced? Perhaps you are struggling with the word “executive” in the term, executive presence. If you prefer, use the term “professional presence.” Executive (or professional) presence will play a significant role in your career success.

Executive presence accounts for 26 percent of what it takes to get the next promotion, according to a 2012 study of 4,000 college graduate professionals in large corporations conducted by the Center for Talent and Innovation. That means that at least one-quarter of “what it takes” to be successful in your career is based on something other than your job performance.

Reading List – Managing Brand You: Seven Steps to Creating Your Most Successful Self By Jerry S. Wilson and Ira Blumenthal

Why read this book? The seven steps in this book provide a roadmap for creating “Brand YOU” by employing the same concepts used in traditional commercial brand management such as brand attributes, brand essence, brand image, and brand insistence. Step one includes a brand audit to assess your current state and the book concludes with step seven, a detailed action plan to implement your Brand YOU. The authors have worked with some of the best brands on the planet including Coca-Cola, McDonald’s, Wal-Mart, Delta Airlines, and Marriott.


At a networking event, you will meet people for the first time and you want to give them the maximum opportunity to remember your name. Attach your nametag very high on your right lapel. Do this because you are usually extending your right hand to shake, so that side of your body will also be slightly extended forward. This makes it easier for the person to read your nametag without having to look across your body.