WOW Of the Week #67: Kinesthetic

May 12, 2009 by  

Kinesthetic – of or relating to the sense of touch.

Do you have a tendency to want to touch people when you speak? Do you judge experiences by how they make you feel? If so, then your primary means of processing information is probably through touch. 25% of the population is kinesthetic.

There are two ways a kinesthetic will operate. Internally and externally. The internals base a large portion of their perception on how people and places make them feel. The externals like to touch others and tend to be hands on.

How do you identify a kinesthetic? They are drawn to sports and physical activity, and as a result, they tend to be in better physical shape than the rest of us. They are very intent and patient listeners. They usually speak slower and in a lower voice.

To be in rapport with a kinesthetic be aware of their need to physically touch everything and that they relate to the world through the way the world makes them feel. If what’s outside makes them feel good they will plunge in and be in total participation.

Key questions to ask are “How did it feel?” “Were you nervous?” “Deep down inside, I have a gut feeling…”

When I am speaking on customer service, I frequently ask my audiences, “What does great service look like, sound like and feel like?” The best answer I have heard to date came from a woman who answered with, “It looks like a smile. It sounds like a giggle. And it feels like home.”

We all have a blend of each of these orientations and the secret to NLP is being conscious of what we already do that works.

This week focus on smiling more, giggling more, and making people feel at home!

Reader Responses

“Great stuff! I will use this as a handout to our service staff.” — Don Vance

“Kinesthetic is not a word we use every day, but it communicates well what you are describing. I have known waitresses who when they know which person in the party is paying the bill, will pay attention to that person by gently putting their hand on that person’s arm. Usually it is that kind of physical contact. I think sometimes that it is unconscious. But what the waitress is trying to do is connect, through a gentle touch, with the person who is going to be paying the bill.  I do think customers like that connection – sometimes. I don’t know if it works all the time, but it can be effective. Smiling, eye contact, listening – all of these things make a connection with the customer and can impress the customer enough to give a generous tip. Wait staff that is not attentive in these ways will not have a chance to make a good impression during the course of the meal. Good word.” — Joe Moran