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The GenWhy Leaders Podcast

Jan 25, 2020

Jonathan’s Why: I’m always looking for ways to better myself, personally and professionally. In my chosen profession, I have to speak to people and I have to be good at it. So why not take the opportunity to learn strategies for being charismatic?

Main concept of the book: To many, charisma comes naturally, which might be discouraging to some, but there are techniques and practices that allow people to become more charismatic. Fox Cabane also outlines the key components of charisma and different types of charisma. 

A little bit about Fox Cabane - she is a lecturer and consultant, who teaches business leaders how to be more charismatic. In the book, she highlights a few ways her methods have led to client’s successes. 

So what is charisma? Merriam Webster defines it as a personal magic of leadership arousing special popular loyalty or enthusiasm for a public figure (such as a political leader) or a special magnetic charm or appeal.”

Compelling attractiveness or charm that can inspire devotion in others.

Key takeaways:


  • Charisma has three main features: Presence, Power and Warmth.


  1. Presence is eye-contact, listening and not letting your mind wander. Focus on the person in front of you or your situation. (delayed reactions are a tell that you’re not present)
  2. Power is your ability to affect the world around you. Wearing nice or expensive clothes. Showing off a level of intelligence or expertise. Or it could be just being physically large.


  • Warmth is about body language and confident posture, sitting up straight for instance. Despite our best intentions, negative thoughts manifest themselves as poor body language and can hurt us.
  • There are different charisma styles


  1. Focus charisma - focusing and listening to make people feel heard.
  2. Visionary charisma - inspires others to act, requires bold vision and conviction.
  3. Authoritative charisma - achieved through power and stature, leads people to obey and follow


  • Kindness charisma - requires warmth and allows us to build emotional connections to others.
  • Rather than impressing others, charismatic people make others impress them, and those people feel good about it.
  • Similarly, a charismatic person has the ability to make every person feel like the most important person in the room. So summing up those points, a charismatic person leaves you feeling better about yourself.
  • Understand what might limit your charisma. Are you a self-critic? The book offers strategies to get away from your self-doubt and into a confident mindset. Are you small in stature? The book offers strategies that help you maximize your physical space. Are you introverted? The book offers suggestions to help you get through situations with large crowds.              
  • And my final takeaway was my misunderstanding of charisma. I thought the most charismatic people were JUST the ones who enter a room, make everyone laugh, and show out-and-out confidence. The different charisma styles that Fox Cabane outlines show how even the quietest people can be charismatic, even in interpersonal settings.


I picked up the Charisma Myth at Barnes and Noble, but you can of course find it on Amazon or the audiobook on Scrib’d. Hope you’ll check it out. 

How to contact Jonathan:



Interested in reading the full book? Click here to buy “The Charisma Myth: How Anyone Can Master the Art and Science of Personal Magnetism”. Follow author Olivia Fox Cabane on social media by clicking here.