Are you maximizing the effect of your voice or speech skills to increase your Business presence or Career aspirations? Recently, at one of my workshops which happened to be focussing on how to enhance the sound of your voice and apply it at networking opportunities, I had a client, Blair, (not his real name)a Sound Engineer, who felt a bit frustrated that networking only applied if you had enough contacts in a big city environment, but not now in his new small rural community. One of the first things we worked on was to improve his speech by having him consciously open his mouth wider and to articulate his words carefully, as he had a common habit of mumbling when he spoke that it was difficult to hear him; plus, he lacked energy or enthusiasm. After a few specific exercises and rehearsal, he perked up.
Next, we worked on writing a simple but sharp “sound bite” that he could use when he met anyone, anywhere, (at the grocery store line-up’s,community events, barbeques, etc.). He did some role-playing so he would be confident with his new networking tag. Finally, I indicated that he needed to get himself out of the house to try his new voice skills out over the next week.
The following week Blair called me to say that he had met someone at a community event who worked in the Broadcast industry, and Blair, using his sound bite in the conversation, led to his getting hired. He called me to say that he would never had known about the job as it was not advertised, and if he had not purposely use his new voice skills and sound bite at that event to engage the man in a conversation, he would have missed out on this opportunity. It was at that event the man suggested that he would be a good candidate for the job.
Here are the top 5 ways to maximize your voice:
1. Tune up your speech and voice skills by getting an audit or assessment done by a speech coach to improve the sound and clarity of your speech. You do not hear what others hear you say and sometimes you do not realize the annoying vocal habits that you have adopted over the years.
2. Infuse energy into your voice and apply that to your presentations, your face-to-face customers, job interviews, and networking skills. You want to avoid having your tone of voice sound dull or uninterested in others. Also, if you are generally shy or quiet, you can easily learn how to project a louder confident voice to mirror an expert status.
3. Speak to Community groups: Introduce your business at your local Chamber of Commerce by speaking for a few minutes about the benefits your business is offering people in your community. Be sure to use your networking sound bite,so you do not ramble or sound disjointed. Go to other service groups and associations to also get the word out. Always remember to use your new tool, your powerful voice, to get your image out in the public and generate business.
4. Authenticate your sincerity to help your clients or customers out by meeting with them personally to handle any complicated situation, or over the telephone to follow-up with a service call. Your message over the telephone must be polite, warm, and calm to suggest a tone of support and co-operation. Here your voice is your best tool and shows your personality for people to remember you.
5. Invest in voice training to you and your staff training as they are the front-line of customer service, and they are the ones who may have to give visiting clients or CEO’s the tour of your business,or do a Power Point presentation that you want to be engaging and go beyond just showing of slides. Doing Staff Training Videos, meetings on Webinars and online teleconferencing requires Communication that is clear, concise, correct, and courteous. There are different vocal techniques that you need to learn when using your voice to speak on podcasts or videos.
Business strategies today are moving toward the social media, webinars,and videos on your website to get your message out there. If you transform your voice skills to the online formats as well; then you will increase the bottom-line of your business and your brand.
What are your particular voice concerns that I could help answer? Leave a comment below