Vocal Traits That Can Damage Your Reputation

Summary: Inflections in one’s voice that can be disadvantageous in business meetings and interviews.

Speech BubblesWhy is it that some people come across more confident and professional sounding? There are the obvious signs such as body language, use of good grammar and clear demonstration that one is well educated and has good knowledge of the subject matter being discussed. But there are a few traits that are becoming more frequent. The first is ‘vocal fry’, a tendency to add a kind of grating vibrato to speech, best described here. The second is that annoying upturn at the end of sentences, even if they are not questions and when it is done repetitively. This is a good video which discusses the latter. The third is the tendency to trail off at the end of sentences.

Apart from avoiding these traits, one can optimise one’s reputation and professionalism by making maximum use of the vocal toolbox we are blessed with. By working on the following aspects of the voice – timbre, rhythmic qualities, pace, silence, pitch and volume, one can  improve one’s impact at business meetings and get better results. Julian Treasure summarises this very well

Comments are closed.