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How Good Are Your Body Language Skills? A Quiz

If you’re a manager, consider using this quiz at your next training meeting to assess your sales team’s current level of expertise. When sitting in on a sales appointment with your sales rep, be sure to incorporate nonverbal communications feedback in your critique. Do you have a working knowledge of body language? See how many of the eight questions you can answer.

1. What emotion is associated with the “palm to chest” gesture?

a. Superiority

b. Critical judgment

c. Sincerity

d. Confidence

2.What is the meaning of the “thumb under the chin” gesture?

a. Deceit

b. Boredom

c. Anxiety

d. Critical judgment

3. What nonverbal message is conveyed with the “chin rub” gesture?

a. Decision

b. Deceit

c. Control

d. None of the above

4. What does it mean when a person rubs his or her nose?

 a. Superiority

b. Anticipation

c. Dislike

d. Anger

5.  What message is conveyed when a person touches his or her eyeglasses to their lips?

a. Interest

b. Stalling

c. Disbelief

d. Impatience

6. When a person looks over the top of his or her eyeglasses, what message are they sending?

a. Contempt

b. Distrust

c. Scrutiny

d. Suspicion

7. What is the impact of nonverbal communication in a face-to-face conversation?

a. 20%

b. 40%

c. 70%

d. 85%

8. Which of the following gestures is/are associated with lying?

a. Talking through fingers

b. Eye rub

c. Ear rub

d. Lack of direct eye contact

e. All of the above

Quiz Answer Key

1. (C) The palm to chest gesture indicates sincerity.

2. (D) The thumb under the chin gesture indicates critical judgment and a negative attitude. A good way to get your prospect to drop this gesture is to hand them something.

3. (A) The chin rub gesture indicates decision. When you see this gesture, avoid the temptation to interrupt. If the gestures that follow chin storking are positive, ask for the order.

4. (C) When someone rubs his or her nose, it’s an indication that they don’t like the subject. When you see this gesture you would be wise to probe with open-ended questions to draw out your customer’s concern.

5. (B) When someone touches his or her eyeglasses to their lips it signals that they’re stalling or delaying a decision. If they put their glasses back on, it’s a buy signal. If they put them away, you have more work to do.

6. (C) When a person looks over his or her eyeglasses it indicates judgment and scrutiny.

7. (C) Research indicates over 70 percent of our communication is achieved non-verbally. In addition, studies show that nonverbal communication has a much greater reliability than the spoken word. Therefore, you would be wise to rely on body language as a more accurate reflection of a person’s true feelings.

8. (E) All of the above. The statue of the Three Wise Monkeys accurately depicts the three primary hand-to-face gestures associated with deceit: see no evil, hear no evil, and speak no evil. While you may not be called upon to participate in a presidential debate or manage a baseball team, you need to be able to recognize your prospect’s “buy signals.” By gaining a working understanding of nonverbal communication, you will be able to reduce sales pressure, build rapport quickly, and dramatically increase your sales effectiveness!

About John Boe

John Boe
John Boe presents a wide variety of motivational and sales-oriented keynotes and seminar programs for sales meetings and conventions. John is a nationally-recognized sales trainer and business motivational speaker with an impeccable track record in the meeting industry. To have John speak at your next event, visit or call (937)299-9001. Free newsletter available on website.

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