3 Part Communication skills: Part 3 of 3
Effective voice tones
If you are a team Leader, or a manager then you would benefit if you decided to improve your communication skills.
Because you need other people to give to you, their best performance: Leaders need the best performance from their managers. Managers need the best performance from their team.
Indeed, you may want to get the best performance from everyone.
And the main tool you have to get the best performance from other people, is your ability to communicate, meaning: your ability to use words and concepts: Your ability to effectively use your body language and voice tones.
Here is a question for you.
"How could you develop your ability to communicate so that you could induce, (persuade or convince) other people to do what you wanted them to do?"
That is an intriguing question. If we devised good answers to that question, then we would both benefit from the knowledge gained. So, let us investigate it further.
In the previous two blogs in this series we have already discussed how you could better use your words, (spoken language) and your body language.
Let us now discuss your use of your voice tones.
Your voice tones are the musical elements of your language.
Your voice tones express how you feel as eloquently as do the words you use.
In fact, your emotions are more accurately expressed, by the tone of your voice, than by the words that you use.
For example, if you asked me, "How are you feeling today, Chris", and I replied; "Great" . But if I said it in a flat, barely audible, lifeless voice, then you would suspect that I did not feel great. You would know that something was wrong.
It is an interesting fact that, if there is a clash between the meaning of the words we use, and the tonality of the voice that we use to express it, then we would usually pin more weight on the voice tone than we do the words.
IF you get promoted over me and you were now my boss, then I might say to you, in a flat, uninspired and dull voice tone, "Congratulations on your promotion. I am really looking forward to working as your subordinate colleague." Then you might get the feeling that I mean the complete opposite of my spoken words.
Voice tones are important.
Question: How would you rate your voice?
Let us assume that you want your voice tone to suggest that you are, intelligent; confident; authoritative; assertive and friendly. This is going to be done, partly, through the proper use of voice tones.
As we noted earlier, your voice tones are the musical elements of your language. And therefore we can analyse your voice tones into its musical components.
Question: In relation to your pitch, pace, rhythm, volume, and accent, what are the "do's and don'ts" that will lead others to assume, based upon the evidence, that you, the speaker, are to be regarded as a highly credible, highly intelligent, confident, authoritative, assertive and friendly speaker and should therefore be listened to with a high degree of interest.
And, in addition, in terms of your voice quality, what might suggest that you are not a credible person, or that you may be stupid, or that you may be a low status individual whose ideas are not worthy of consideration.
Do: use the lower, deeper end of your natural voice range. Deep voices are deemed to have more authority.
Don't use a squeaky high pitched voice. High pitched, shrill voices are deemed to belong to juvenile and therefore not authoritative people.
Do; monitor your pace of delivery. Speak at a pace of about 120 - 160 words per minute.
Don't speak too quickly, because they won't take in your message, and you will seem to be overexcited and therefore not thinking straight.
Don't speak too slowly because they will become bored by the laborious pace.
Do vary the rhythm. Variability in rhythm and intensity of voice makes you more interesting to listen to.
Do speak slightly louder, (10%) louder than you think you ought. Louder voices sound more confident. ( But do not become a loudmouth!) . We mean only slightly louder. More volume is not necessarily better.
Accent and emphasise key words and phrases.
Don't be afraid to repeat important points. Repeat all the important points. Repetition has an effect on the memory. If you repeat an idea they are more likely to remember it. If you say it only once you risk them not hearing it properly the first time and therefore they don't remember it and they won't act on the message they can't remember.
Accent and repeat key words and phrases.
Let us assume that you are not 100% satisfied with your own voice tones; that if you could, you would change some aspect of your voice.
Question; what aspect of your voice do you think you should improve? What aspects of your voice do you think you would benefit by, if you were to improve it.
Identify the one change that would make the biggest difference and then; commit to working to improve that one aspect of your voice tone.
Do that and reap the benefits.
In this series of three blogs we have discussed the use of words and body language and voice tones.
Please click on any of the links below.
The use of words to influence others.
The use of body language to influence others.
The use of voice tones to influence others.
I hope you enjoyed these posts, and will start applying these tips. Please, let me know what you think and add your thoughts down below in the comments. Feel free to pass this on to your friends and colleagues.