It’s not just professional voice over artists or actors that need voice training, many people out in the business world could use a little help sounding professional. If your job involves phone work or public speaking then you’ll want to be sure you don’t fall into one of the following voice habits.
You may need to ask an honest friend or co-workers opinion, as it can be very hard to know what our own voices sound like.
Monotone – Flat, emotionless speech patterns with very little inflection up or down. This presents to others as a disinterest, boredom and low energy, practice speaking with energy and emotion to break out of the boring rut.
Gravelly – Ending words or sentences in a creaky breathy way. Perfect for a 40’s movie siren, but not so suitable for professional calls and conferences. Try breathing exercises to regulate air intake and speech balance.
Irritating – If you’ve been told your voice is shrill or nasal try concentrating on your diaphragm while talking, project from the chest, not the nose.
Valley Girl – Kiwis are notorious for this taking style, by pitching up at the end of sentences, making everything sound like a question. This comes off as uncertainty to listeners and is a real problem for those in a position of authority or seniority. By being aware of this pattern, you can actively work to eliminate it.
The Radio Host – a booming fake baritone meant to make the talker sound confident and intelligent, instead it presents as inauthentic and showy to listeners. Practise talking naturally while on the phone.
The Filler – Uses an excessive amount of words like ‘um’, ‘ah’ and ‘like’ to fills gaps in their speech. This sounds immature and insecure but can be fixed by simply pausing instead of using the filler word.
The loudspeaker – Someone who uses volume constantly, especially when frustrated or trying to be heard. Actively try to lower your voice to half volume and work to keep it that way. Take a moment to breathe and re-group if things get loud.
Do you identify yourself or a team member in one of these descriptions? Work together to create the professional, confident sound your callers want to hear, and always choose professional voice artist to record your messaging system and advertising.