In life, many opportunities are tied to what other people think of you. It normal to hear things like, “don’t care about what other think of you”. Well, sometimes, you really have to be bothered about it.
At your workplace, if people you work with think you are smart, you are most likely to get asked to take part in projects that will enhance your career. On the other hand, when thoughts that you are dumb starts flying in people’s heads, you’ll probably be passed over. Looking smart is just as important as being smart.
Assuming that you are actually smart, and you don’t have to fake anything — Your goal should be to make people think of you as a smart person. Humans aren’t particularly good at judging the intelligence of other humans. Here are six things you can do that will help enhance people’s perception of your intelligence.
The more you can contribute to a conversation, a meeting, or other discourse, the smarter you’ll come off. Even if it means admitting ignorance or asking questions, you’ll still look better than if you stay silent—and you might actually learn something in the process.
Expressive speech is key: you can boost your credibility a lot by simply making sure you speak with an engaging tone. Change your pitch and volume as necessary, and try to minimize the number of pauses as you speak. A little confidence goes a long way.
Take a contrary view
This has to be done delicately. Simply disagreeing with everyone around you will not help. However, having a well reasoned position that is different than others shows you are capable of independent thought.
You must be careful not to insult anyone when you choose to take this approach. Keep in mind that you are probably not aware of all the relationships that exist. Taking the position that the CEO of your company is doing a poor job while talking to his daughter will not make you look intelligent.
Go about with reading materials
It is better if you actually read the material, but since we started with the assumption that you are smart we can probably also assume that you regularly read “smart” things.
You could carry around a business book or any great informative material. You are simply managing perceptions and trying to make sure people associate you with sources of information that they think are intelligent.
Most people try to show how smart they are by telling others what they know. This often backfires. It is easy to appear arrogant. In addition, the person who always acts like an expert on every subject is likely to be regarded with some suspicion.
Asking intelligent questions can showcase your intelligence much more effectively than showing everyone how much you know. There are several reasons for this. The first reason is that most truly intelligent people are extremely teachable–that is how they became so intelligent. If you are trying to act smart without exhibiting teachable behavior people will think you are a fake.
What else do you do to appear smart at work?