Sunday, May 13, 2012

Nonverbal Communication Analysis # 1811:
Jamie Dimon - the Day Before Announcement of
JPMorgan Chase's $2 Billion Loss

This interview segment of JPMorgan Chase's President & CEO, Jamie Dimon was made on Wednesday 9 May 2012 - the day prior to his announcement of the largest U.S. bank losing approximately $2 Billion in derivative-related trading. In the next two days, Dimon called this a, "sloppy", "stupid" and a "terrible, egregious mistake".

Dimon's "pre-announcement" body language in this video is worth noting. Throughout this segment the CEO displays a conventional steeple. While this variation of body language does transmit high confidence - it should only be used in small doses and on very specific occasions. The vast majorities of the times people over-use the conventional steeple and therefore send excessively-alpha signals at best - but unfortunately and more commonly emotions of arrogance and condescension are transmitted.

Secret # 1503: The Conventional Steeple vs. The Basketball Steeple - Seeking a Balance

Secret # 277: The Conventional Steeple - Use it on Rare Occasions & in Small Doses

Secret # 901: The Over-Used Steeple - Backfire in Berlin

Another over-alpha configuration Mr. Dimon has adopted is the seated-crotch display. This is also a classic dominance nonverbal. While I do think he's well advised to keep the bottoms of both feet on the floor, sitting with his legs not quite so widely spread - e.g., at a 30-40 degree angle rather than the approximately 70 degrees (about as wide as his chair allows) he displays throughout this segment - sends feelings of confidence without the hyper-alpha messages the wider crotch display emits. The goal is to be and look confident, without being excessive.

Although obviously not the context here, the seated crotch display can also be a signal of sexual attraction. This nonverbal may displayed by females, however it is much more common in males.

Secret # 401: Male Dominance Display - Faux pas

Secret # 593: Projecting and Detecting Confidence

Another body language that Jamie Dimon should adopt is the simple act of leaning & sitting slightly forward on his chair. Resting one's back against a chair can send messages of nervousness, disengagement, aloofness and arrogance (depending on the other body language with which it is clustered). The audience (even an audience of one) will easily sense this and thus sitting & leaning slightly forward aides in building rapport and engenders a positive feedback loop of engagement-confident-comfort-sincerity.

Secret # 1139: How Destroy Rapport

Analysis # 1650: Ozzie Guillen Gets Suspended by Miami Marlins Team President

Mr. Dimon was named to Time Magazine's World's Most 100 influential people for four of the last six years. It's natural for any person to appear overly dominant in such a setting. What's much more challenging is to be assertive and dominant without having it backfire - particularly when you're in crisis mode.

Mr. Dimon - before you testify before Congress, call me.