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Best of Howard Schwartz

Gaming Guru

 

New body language book might help in business, social decisions

10 January 2008

For poker, Mike Caro started it all with his studies of the body language of poker. Years later, Joe Navarro and Phil Hellmuth dug into the subject deeper. Gamblers, businessmen, police interrogators, job interviewers, lawyers and military intelligence have applied many of the same principles for years. They are all searching for the answer to one question: When is a subject lying and when is he truthful?

Now Tonya Reiman, with her new work, The Power of Body Language: How to Succeed in Every Business and Social Encounter (334 pages, hardbound, $25) takes the answer a step further, with tips, examples of how to project positive signs, read them, eliminating negative moves and the importance of facial expressions and body language.

Most other books teach you how to detect some signals, signs, and movements of a positive sense. Reiman takes it up a few notches and especially enlightening in an election year, alerts you to sincerity, potential flat out lies or trust.

Inspired to a degree by the classic pioneer in the field (Paul Ekman), Reiman prepares and tutors the reader to be more assertiveness with eye contact, handshakes, in making speeches, voice, pitch, energy levels. Salesmen, those seeking to improve their social skills, those who envision themselves shying away from large groups or parties, who want to learn how to be "more open" socially -- even where to be seen or heard best at a business meeting -- will find the book valuable. Oh yes, there's a small two-page section on poker. Throughout the book there are nuggets of advice on communicating with non-English speaking individuals -- how to make them feel more comfortable. You'll even get an idea about talk show hosts on television who are being deceptive with a guest, by the way they, for instance, rub their nose or cup their chin.

This is a book about projecting confidence and feeling good about yourself. Although this is an unusual book for gamblers to read, it's excellent for those in casino management and human resources, and, of course, for poker players looking for the edge.

On the flop side of being honest and truthful are the con men and liars in history. This leads us to an interesting work titled Fakers, Forgers and Phoneys: Famous Scams and Scamps by Magnus Magnusson (414 pages, paperbound, $16.95).

The book, published in England, isolates four major categories: Art forgeries; Archeological Frauds; Secrets Lives (Impostors and Hoaxers) and Literary Forgeries. Illustrated, with a 13-page index of names and places, it's fascinating, fun reading, to understand how "experts" in a variety of areas were deceived, often because of sloppiness, ego or the willingness to believe the unbelievable.

There are more than a dozen frauds and hoaxes detailed, including a phony Viking map; the Piltdown man and the "Turk in the cabinet" (the first chess automaton).

Howard Schwartz
Howard Schwartz, the "librarian for gamblers," was the marketing director for Gambler's Book Club in Las Vegas, a position he held from 1979 to 2010, when he retired. Author of hundreds of articles on gambling, his weekly book reviews appear in numerous publications throughout the gaming industry.

Howard Schwartz Websites:

www.gamblersbook.com
Howard Schwartz
Howard Schwartz, the "librarian for gamblers," was the marketing director for Gambler's Book Club in Las Vegas, a position he held from 1979 to 2010, when he retired. Author of hundreds of articles on gambling, his weekly book reviews appear in numerous publications throughout the gaming industry.

Howard Schwartz Websites:

www.gamblersbook.com