TODAY   |  March 02, 2010

Body-language boot camp

Former ATF agent Janine Driver reveals how actions do speak louder than words in her new book about body language, “You Say More Than You Think.” Driver shows TODAY’s Al Roker how you can revamp your reactions.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> go-gurt. freeze it. thaw it.

>>> if actions speak louder than words, then what are you saying with your body? in her book "you say more than you think," janine driver says you can change the way you're perceived and get what you want using her seven-day new body language plan. nice to see you.

>> nice to see you, al. thank you for having me.

>> good to have you. during your 16 years of investigative training, you had a high-security clearances, how difficult was it to perceive what somebody's body language would mean?

>> it can be really challenging. for me, i'm throwing you in jail or teaching cops to tell if bad guys are lying. i can't do it because you touch your nose, say to the judge he touched his nose, he's lying or put his hands in his pocket, he's lying. so, it's about baselining and you're looking at what someone's baseline is and if they deviate from that. so, woody allen is a neurotic kind of a guy, right? his hands tend to be in his pockets. he's very small. then you have someone like howard stern . howard stern tends to take up more space, he's very relaxed. look at him. this is his norm. his his baseline. if all of a sudden, howard stern started playing with his cuticles or buried his hands in his pockets and looked more like woody allen , that would say to me as a law enforcement officer , there is more to the story here.

>> a lot of this is subconscious, but you say you can consciously make changes.

>> absolutely. i have the seven-day plan. for seven days, you learn a new skill every day and at the end of the chapter, it's great, i give you ten exercises. some you can go out and do, some you can do from the comfort of your own home. simply going to youtube and looking at oprah when she interviewed kris angel , the magician. he guessed her number, 1 to 100. how did he guess it? well, there's a body language element. i tell you what to look for and you can use this in your life.

>> let's look here. first one, a job interview . you say with a handshake, you can make a big impression .

>> you can. a handshake, there's more to the story. if you look here, look what happened here. this is the kiss of death , al. she has -- she's the interviewer. she's coming in, giving what's called the upper hand. what she just did is killed all chances of success.

>> because she had her hand over his?

>> absolutely. so, this move right here is the upper hand. she's trying to dominate him. you will not get the job if you try to dominate him.

>> let's look at what the correct thing would be.

>> what happens here is you're going to see her walk into the room now. instead of her giving the upper hand, you're going to actually see something more powerful. wait, before we go there, al, she's making more mistakes. look what she just did here. here's another faux pas , number two, big mistake . she has her hands under the table. never hide your hands. the other mistake is she sat down directly across from the person interviewing her. this is fight or flight . when i'm going to fight someone, i go directly face in front of them. what she's just done is increased stress. and by increasing stress, you stress him out, you become more stressed, and this is not going to be the job.

>> so, don't keep the hand over the top , don't sit directly across from somebody and keep your hands visible.

>> absolutely. those are the three biggest mistakes in an interview. now we'll see her do it right.

>> okay.

>> here she'll come in and it's very strategic, give him the upper hand. bam, look what happened. she's underneath the hand and gave him the impression he's in control.

>> she moved the chair over.

>> two, she moved the chair over here, very strategic. now you see her hands, al. look, she's using a gesture right here, which is a-ok. a-ok. it's a small emblem that she used that says i'm the person for the job. by moving the chair to the side, you've decreased stress and by decreasing stress, you increase your chances of getting a job.

>> boardroom meeting. let's go to this. this is interesting stuff as you talk about steepling.

>> yes, steepling right here. this man is doing what's called the handgun steeple, which says he's about to kill her dead, right? [ laughter ]

>> she doesn't even know she's got it coming!

>> she's doing a more traditional steeple, where this is what donald trump often does in the boardroom.

>> right.

>> by looking at this picture, we know without a doubt she is the boss. he is going to kill all chances of success. look at these guys, very open, open, open.

>> so, that's good?

>> this is the trouble-maker.

>> he's bad. he's bad.

>> watch what happens now. so, he's going to all of a sudden start talking and he's going to be even more aggressive. when you see someone pull out the handgun steeple, we know there's more trouble to come. in a second, here we go -- look, bam! palm-down gestures, look at this, pushing her away.

>> ooh.

>> push, push, push.

>> first he kills her, then pushes her away.

>> what does she doing? crosses her arms. you have just backed down your supervisor.

>> oh, boy.

>> this is the kiss of death .

>> dead man walking .

>> here's the quick fix. i call it in my book, seven quick fixes. if you notice you're shutting someone down -- here's the boss again. here's the boss. use this open-palm gesture. he's looking for approval from other people on the team. open palms, this is what a beggar says, a dollar, please, a dollar, please.

>> i'm begging you.

>> you are going to be heard. look, our boss does not close down now. she stays open.

>> let's do the dating. we're in a bar situation, two single girls.

>> all right, two single girls. these women are never going to be approached. their belly buttons are facing the bar. we face our belly button towards people we like, admire and trust. so, right here, unless you're trusting the booze and the bartender, if you're single --

>> so, you should face outward, your belly button out.

>> i call this naval intelligence , al.

>> okay, so, there you are. naval intelligence , i like that.

>> so, this is what we call the quick fix again. so, my book is great for bars, it's great for the boardroom. right here, look at the difference. as men looking in, we now see these two women.

>> they're available.

>> they're available, absolutely.

>> and a guy going to try --

>> this guy looks pathetic. now, he's doing something powerful here, called hooking. he's a good hooker, al, because this is a powerful move. powerful people do that. here she has her leg crossed, so she's creating a circle with him. but what happens if she dumps him? all of us are looking in and all we see is his back.

>> so we should be sitting in with the belly button facing out.

>> look at the quick fix. he turns it around --

>> and boom, he's done. very nice.

>> so, my book is a tool to reading people accurately and a tool to getting what you want from the boardroom to the barroom to the bedroom.