It is important to maintain eye contact when communicating to others. Studies have shown that looking a person in the eye for at least three seconds can make a speaker sound more authoritative. On the other hand, people who avoid eye contact are perceived as unknowledgeable and untrustworthy, which will prevent them from being able to persuade others.

Scan the Room

In most situations, we’re not comfortable maintaining eye contact with a total stranger. We break eye contact if someone catches our attention, which signals interest or attraction. It is difficult to differentiate between Level 2 and Level 1 eye contact, but over time, you can develop this ability.

During a public presentation, the best way to avoid missing this vital step is to scan the room for the greatest degree of eye contact with a wide range of people. Instead of rushing through the room, you should pause for three to five seconds and make meaningful eye contact with each person before moving on.

The distance between observers and participants also affects the reliability of eye contact ratings. Split-screen video cameras have better reliability than single-camera studies. However, additional studies are needed to better understand the best eye contact measures and to improve the interpretation of previous studies. A comparative study of eye contact should be conducted to help researchers select the most appropriate methods.

Focus on the Back of the room

When speaking in public, the first few rows of the room are the easiest targets to make eye contact with. However, you must make an effort to look into the audience and maintain eye contact with everyone. This will help you start the conversation on the right foot. For example, if you are talking to someone in the back of the room, look into their eyes while smiling.

Focus on the Front of the room

When trying to communicate with others, it is important to make eye contact. This allows the brain to focus on one thing at a time. When people are looking at you, they will feel as if you’re looking right into them. However, it is also important to remember that you don’t have to have the same level of eye contact with everyone in the room. If you can focus on the front of the room, the rest of the room will feel more personal.

When making eye contact during a public speaking event, it is important to avoid sweeping your eyes around the room. This can give the impression of a clown at a fair, and will cause you to miss out on anyone in the back of the room. Focus on individuals and small groups to create the most eye contact.

Chelsea Glover