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Power Cues: The Subtle Science of Leading Groups, Persuading Others, and Maximizing Your Personal Impact Hardcover – May 13, 2014
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This isn’t self-help hocus pocus: Morgan explores the neuroscience and psychological underpinnings of our behaviors and offers pathways to incorporating this understanding into more effective daily communications with colleagues, customers, the board, and even your kids.” strategy+business magazine
what he offers is a chance for all of us to better connect with our authentic selves and one another. With that power in practical application, just think what we can achieve.” Jack Covert, 800 CEO READ
a practical and useful guide... a blueprint for effective leadership.” Publishers Weekly
Power Cues is helpful because it helps readers to understand the nonverbal messages that they are currently sending out, and provides specific suggestions for relaying the messages they want to send out in order to influence others.” AASA, School Administrator
ADVANCE PRAISE for Power Cues:
Keith Ferrazzi, New York Times bestselling author, Never Eat Alone and Who’s Got Your Back
A must-read for anyone who wants to become a more effective communicator. Between Nick Morgan’s depth of knowledge of both verbal and nonverbal communication and his direct, humorous, and occasionally tough love’ approach, Power Cues shows you exactly how to be powerfully persuasive.”
Erica Ariel Fox, New York Times bestselling author, Winning from Within
Nick Morgan’s groundbreaking book will open your eyes to a whole new world of understanding about how you share ideas and influence people. Read it, and you will never look at this topic in the old way’ againand you’ll get much better results by applying his wisdom.”
Josh Linkner, CEO, Detroit Venture Partners; author, Disciplined Dreaming and The Road to Reinvention
Nick Morgan combines neuroscience and practical advice to create a compelling set of steps you can take to lead any group, win any negotiation, or wow any room. Power Cues is the must-read book of the year.”
Nicco Mele, Adjunct Lecturer in Public Policy, Harvard Kennedy School; author, The End of Big
In Power Cues, Nick Morgan skillfully reveals the extent to which we are influenced by our unconscious minds. He provides a practical and deeply compelling process to harness this influence so that we can connect with others more powerfully and positively. This book will forever change how you think about leadership.”
David Meerman Scott, bestselling author, The New Rules of Marketing and PR; marketing and sales strategist
The profound wisdom in Power Cues has transformed my life . . . [F]or those who want to reach the top of their fields through truly effective communication, what you will learn here works brilliantly.”
Sally Hogshead, author, How the World Sees You
Nick Morgan is a master communicator, a leader among leaders . . . By combining exquisite insight with mesmerizing storytelling and research, this book reveals how to engage and inspire others before you even open your mouth to speak.”
About the Author
Top customer reviews
Everyone can get something different out of this book, depending on their baseline level of knowledge of nonverbal communication. Without false modesty, I can say that I have read dozens of books and hundreds of articles on the topic, including almost all of his principal sources. But I also learned a lot, because Morgan supplements the research by incorporating it into his own system based on his long experience. It’s obvious that he knows what he’s talking about and what he’s doing.
The theme of the book is that your unconscious mind is hugely influential in your perceptions and decisions, and you can become a better communicator by gaining control over your own cues and becoming more skilled at reading others.
There are seven power cues, each covered in its own chapter. I personally found the first two the most useful: becoming self-aware of how you present yourself to others and then taking charge of your nonverbal communication. One excellent point is that “charisma is focused emotion”, but because it’s almost impossible to focus on your material and your own body language at the same time, you need to put yourself into the right state of mind before that important meeting or big presentation, and the book describes techniques that method actors use before they go on stage.
The third chapter concerns reading the signals of others. Morgan pays lip service to Paul Ekman’s work on micro-expressions, but then sensibly tells us that it’s too complicated to use in normal situations. Morgan’s key insight is that we are already experts in reading nonverbal cues, but we don’t always know how to tap into that knowledge. His approach is to teach you how to listen to your unconscious mind by asking yourself four fundamental questions: Is this person: friend or foe? Telling the truth? On my side? Powerful or not?
After the first three chapters, the book became less useful to me, but that may just be a personal reaction. Chapter four concerns the proper use of your voice. It’s no great revelation that deeper voices are perceived as more powerful, but there is not too much that you can do about it. You can work on your breathing, or you can use a piano to find your “maximum resonance point” (and I have to admit I got totally lost on that one).
Chapter 5 goes deeper into the combination of body language and voice, using the framework from the book, Honest Signals, by Sandy Pentland. I find some of the suggestions a bit gimmicky, especially the idea of trying to manipulate others by mirroring their movements, but there are some good ideas in here.
Chapter 6 made me scratch my head a bit, trying to figure out how it fits in with the rest of the book. It’s about using self-affirmation to harness the power of your unconscious mind.
Chapter 7 is about using stories to really connect with your audiences. This chapter is very practical, with excellent suggestions on how to structure and tell stories. It’s a nice strong finish to the book.
Will this book make you a better communicator? Maybe – it depends on you. I have two caveats. The first is one that Morgan himself issues in the book: these are subtle and difficult skills that require practice to master. You can’t become an instant expert just by reading about a new technique, any more than you can shoot a basketball better because you watched Lebron James on TV last night. Second, you always have to keep in mind that cues don’t trump content in the long run. In fact, if you have strong content backed by solid evidence, you will probably radiate these cues naturally.
Despite my reservations, I still give the book five stars because I believe that regardless of where you start from, there are plenty of practical ideas in this book to make you a more persuasive communicator. Read it, choose the ideas that you think will work for you, and then practice, practice, practice!
This book will help you ensure that your two conversations (verbal and non-verbal) are congruent and that your message will be heard and acted upon. I am looking forward to referring back to this book often and continuing to work through the exercises on a regular basis.
"Power Cues" is an incredibly generous and comprehensive book in which Nick Morgan lays out, in detail, how to do just that. How to take charge, consciously -- if you're up for the task.
So, if you get nervous speaking in front of large groups and want to know why and what you can do about it; if you want to know how to read a room and figure out who is friend or foe; or if you're curious how your speaking voice could be affecting your ability to hold attention, influence others or get that promotion - this book can help.
Similarly, if you wonder what you're "saying" to others when you walk into a room, before you ever speak a word, basically, if you are wondering at all about how you're coming across to others may be impacting your professional life -- buy this book.
By the way, not only does this book help you get your power cues under control, it also gives guidance on what to say once you do. In the last chapter, Morgan gives a very thorough explanation of exactly what storytelling is and is not (thank you) and explains why and how great storytelling can enable you to literally "synchronize minds."
On a more personal note, the information in Power Cues enabled me to give a name and a form to some nagging issues that I hadn't been able to put my finger on, no matter how hard I'd tried. Now that I know what is going on, I can do something about it -- and that's a great feeling. Thank you, Nick Morgan!
Dr. Morgan writes clearly and concisely. His instructions are easy to follow and implement. All of his research is clearly annotated, and the notes section provides additional material for further reading if interested.
The best part about the book? Its fun to read! While his research is clearly backed by scientific evidence, it is written with easy to understand stories that paint an enjoyably clear picture of how to communicate with anyone! I highly recommend this book to anyone looking to improve their leadership, charisma, and speaking abilities!