Intuitive Skills in Business

Capitalizing on Intuition in the Workplace

Every person has experienced a feeling when something occurs or is about to occur. This feeling may be accompanied by chills, accelerated heart rate, sweaty palms, or a sense of calm. Whatever the signs, intuition is the cause. Intuition explains how people know of events or outcomes before they take place. Intuition can also be used to influence an outcome. This may mean speaking up at during a team meeting and focusing on a topic that no one else wants to discuss, but one that is important. Using intuition in business is one way to judge how a situation is turning out, when to speak up and when not to. Intuition can also be used to predict trends that may make the company more money. Recognizing and capitalizing on intuition skills is a must for every effective leader.

Honing in on this leadership skill can take some time, but after awhile people who concentrate on being more observant, looking at body language, and reading between the lines, will be able to predict quite a bit. Everyone has this ability; it’s just that some people have learned early on how to use it.

It is worth pointing out that intuition is based on feelings and not fact. Although facts may prove that ones intuition was correct, this does not mean that all intuitions should be acted upon. Assumption is another pitfall of intuition. Never assume anything until there is proof. Many times, leaders just use intuition as a guide to read other people’s reactions.

There are a few ways to use intuition when trying to gauge people’s reactions in team meetings, product planning, and in many other situations. Understanding these reactions will help when trying to sell’ an idea or product, training new employees, leading a team project, and even to tell when someone is lying.

Body language, tone of voice, facial expressions, and eye movements are cues that intuitive people use to prepare for possible outcomes. These are not the only factors that intuitive people use, but they are useful when trying to improve intuition.

Body language the most obvious way to gauge what a person is feeling. If a person is contributing to a conversation, they will lean forward, if they are bored, they will lean back and slouch. Body language is a good indication to follow when giving a speech or leading a meeting. Meetings that go on for too long are never productive. As soon as people begin to withdraw physically from the discussion, it is best to close the meeting quickly.

Tone of voice is an indicator of mood, acceptance, denial, and emotion. When a person is interested in the discussion, they may talk faster and be more expressive. When disinterested, a person may speak slowly and quietly. If a person does not understand the material being presented, they may end their statements as questions. When this happens, it is best to summarize what is being said so that they will begin to understand.

Facial expressions are used in conjunction with body language and tone of voice. Facial expressions can tell how a person is feeling as they are being told information. These expressions can indicate hundreds of emotions from confusion to anger. In meetings, it is important to look around the room and watch facial expressions. If the majority of the people seem confused, then summarize what is being said and ask if anymore clarification will be needed.

Eye movements are more subtle because they can happen very quickly and then change. People who are lying will usually look down or to the left in order to avoid other people’s eyes. People who are being honest or who want another person’s full attention will look at them directly. While there are other factors that contribute to eye movement, it can still give an indication of how a person is really feeling in a situation.

Taking the time to actively observe and use the ideas presented here will begin to enhance leadership skills and soon any leader will be amazed at their ability to capitalize on their intuitive skills in business.


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