Let’s talk about your voice. Many find listening to their voices on tape or video uncomfortable, usually accompanied with a rhetorical ‘Do I really sound like that?’ question. Given that we ‘hear’ our voices all the time it seems surprising that most of us are unaware of tone, pitch, timbre, tempo, projection and the like. After all, our voices are something we are simply born with… surely? Whilst your ‘sound’ has a unique signature, the way you use your voice is similar to that of a musical instrument.
As an instrument, your speaking voice produces a wide variety of tones and pitches… highs and lows. Your voice conveys complex tonality and has a wonderful percussive capacity. By subtly shifting the pitch or rhythm of words in a sentence you can dramatically change the meaning of your communication and convey multilevel nuances. For example, try saying, “I didn’t say I would join you at the meeting” as if you are shocked – as if you had been accused. Say the same words with defiance or anger, then, as if you are confessing a crime. As you speak, listen to your voice and notice how the “music” of the sentence changes. Say the same sentence five times and, each time, emphasise or rhythmically accent a different word. Listen to how the communication changes when the “music” and emphasis is altered.
Like any finely tuned instrument, your voice can be exercised and tuned to produce a clear, smooth and percussive sound. Your voice is an instrument that you need to learn to play in order for it to become an incredibly powerful tool to influence, persuade, move and engage any audience.
Within the Mastering Communication Program hosted by Colin James and Erica Bagshaw, we explore voice training and the three essential methods to enable you to communicate impactfully with the Voice of Authority.
1. Vocal Projection
Your ability to project clearly – Adjusting your volume to fill the room without dominating it.
2. Vocal Pace
Controlling the speed at which you speak – Being influential through confidence where confidence is expressed by slowing down and controlling the rate at which you deliver your content.
3. Vocal Pitch
The musicality of a voice– Creating that lovely vocal experience by combining vocal role variety, colour, expressiveness and texture.
It’s the combination of the 3 P’s (projection, pace and pitch) that determines the ‘voice’ or vocal role you employ in various situations. Think about how many ‘voices’ you use… work voice, home, parenting, partner voices, meeting, formal, informal, authority and supplication. And that’s just scraping the surface.
If you are invested in your career, if you want to become a master at communication skills, then learning from excellent communicators, particularly those that are skilled at the use of voice is a good place to start.
The Colin James Method® Facilitators train corporate executives to improve their professional communication skills with a proven methodology. Our highly trained Facilitators and Coaches are recognised for their experience in their fields and have worked with many individuals and organisations around the world to master the art of communication.