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|In This Issue:
- Voice Techniques To Command Attention & Authority
- Links to recent articles below
- Calm Barometer, Talk Tips, Wordplay, Quick Links
How To Do Better In A Radio Interview
I was invited to give a live radio interview over the phone, to talk about Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s speaking style, body language and...
Who Wants To Be A Celebrity?
In the last 12 months I’ve received many juicy sounding offers...
Don’t Give A Speech; Be The Speech
My friend Amanda, a dancer, gave an impromptu speech at a meeting...
What Does Your Voice Say About You?
Voice Techniques To Command Attention & Authority
Why do some people generate more attention and authority than others? Is it something they do with their voice?
I Speak Therefore I Breathe
As you breathe in and out, air is pushed out of the lungs by the diaphragm and upwards against the vocal cords. This causes the cords to separate and breath passes between them. Ta daa! Sound is produced! The extraordinary variety of sounds we humans produce is caused by the vibrating sound waves in the throat, nose and mouth.
Why Everyone Has A Unique Voice
Your voice is different to everyone else's because of the unique size and shape variations producing different vocal tones in the vocal cords, nose, mouth and throat.
Your voice becomes even more unique to you when volume strengths such as soft and loud are added. In your mind, think of hearing a whisper… now think of hearing a command.
Pitch conveys the colour, meaning and emotion behind your words. Think of a speaker you know who's voice has a high, monotonous, low, shrill, flat or squeaky pitch. What’s your reaction to each? What’s your preference?
For Every Role, A Different Voice
Everyday, we all play different roles as parents, colleagues, managers, friends, lovers or children. Have you noticed whether or not your voice changes as you step into each new role? Have you noticed a variation in the voice of others? Obvious examples include:
- A soft, slower tone when addressing children or some one who is upset or an employee learning a complex new task;
- an authoritative tone when addressing a team or audience;
- a playful whisper to share a joke with your partner.
HOW you say your words is more influential than WHAT you say.
Influencing Others With Your Voice
Expression and emotion in your voice stirs an emotional response in others. For example, in the West:
- Deeper, authoritative tones enhance credibility and leadership;
- High, shrill tones lose authority and are ignored;
- Soft, confident, slow tones cause people to ‘lean in” and reflect;
- Powerful, story telling tones using language rich with emotive pictures command attention and engage imagination.
Leaders are often selected due to their ability to lead with their voice and the power of their words. If you are a leader, you need to speak with professional presence. If you are a speaker, you need to lead with professional presence. Leading and speaking are flip sides of the same coin.
What Does Your Voice Say About You?
Most of us make assumptions about what we sound like based on feedback both verbal and non verbal (such as a smile or a frown) from others.
But are your assumptions about your voice and it’s influence, correct?
Some of my clients come to see me about “improving their voice” as they desire to command authority and attention when they speak. Sometimes the reasons are obvious:
- They speak too softly (so they learn to project);
- They speak too quickly (so they learn to slow down and pause);
- They speak in a monotone (so they learn how to add colour);
- They speak with a nervous quiver (so they learn to manage nerves).
What surprises me is how often people assume their voices aren’t powerful enough, effective enough, articulate enough or even good enough for others to hear. When we film or record their voice, they can hear the truth for themselves and take steps if they need to.
What Does Your Voice Sound Like?
To command greater attention and authority when you speak, you first need to get some factual feedback:
- Ask 5 friends and colleagues for 5 words describing your speaking style;
- Observe the impact of your words as they land on people’s faces. Are they listening respectfully, enthusiastically or tuning out?
- Visit my website Home Page and send me a voice message when the Invitation Box pops up. You can record and listen till you are happy with it and then send it to me. Please keep it to 30 seconds!
Great speakers and leaders (at home, at work and in the world) command respect, trust and attention and inspire credibility and action. You can use your influence “for good” simply by finding and tweaking your authentic voice. If you need my help, leave me a voice message and let me hear you!
© 2014, Geraldine Barkworth, speaker, coach & workshop facilitator @ Goddess Of Public Speaking.
Time To Take Your Cool, Calm & Connected Pulse!
Using the Calm Barometer below, rate how cool, calm and connected you feel right now between 1 and 10...
When you speak, lead and live with natural ease and authenticity, you will be closer to 10.
When you feel scattered, distracted or unconfident, you will be closer to 1.
What To Do: If you are "7" or above today, notice what's working well and keep doing it. Accept that daily variations in confidence and clarity are normal. If you are below "7" today, listen to our free recording of the 5 minute Inner Calm exercise. You can also download our 2 free A4 Posters of Inner Calm and the Calm Barometer for your wall.
© 2011, Geraldine Barkworth. Reprintable when full credit is given & whole newsletter is reproduced. Contact Geraldine Barkworth on +61 (2) 6685 1917 or firstname.lastname@example.org
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