What's Your Vocal and Verbal Brand Saying?
The way you speak and sound IS your vocal brand. When people think of you, it's what comes to mind; from virtual meetings and presentations to interviews and first impressions.
Questions to ask yourself:
What kind of feeling does your voice leave people with?
Do you sound confident and trustworthy? Calm and knowledgeable? Or are you unsure-sounding and questioning in either your tone or words?
Is your voice richly toned and expressive? Or does your voice lack depth and color and your speech sound monotonous?
Do you get to the point and express your ideas succinctly? Or do you "uh, um..." and circumlocute around the block a few times?
All of these factors play a huge part in a listener's perception of you-and in the way you may even start to perceive yourself.
The thing is: Even if your verbal brand isn't terribly misrepresenting you, it may not be doing you any favors. And there's a LOT you can do about it.
Your voice and speaking style play a pivotal role in your professional success and the way people think of you socially.
If your smart ideas, clever jokes, or interesting stories are being sabotaged by your verbal and vocal style, do something about it. That quip you made in yesterday's meeting should have brought smiles of admiration, not blank stares!
Is your voice restricted to your throat, strangled by nerves or suppressed by tension? To have your message heard and received the way you intend, it needs to flow freely from your relaxed mouth, jaw, and grounded body, and a well-supported breath. When you speak with lots of relaxed, forward flowing air, your voice will sound resonant, warm, credible, and persuasive. And it's not hard to learn how!
Your voice and delivery can oftentimes trump even your words, so you'd be smart to pay some attention to it. My clients are smart go-getters and they do what they have to to get what they want and need in life. If part of that includes developing a more authoritative, compelling, or magnetic voice and image, that is what they will invest in.
We do it together. We'll record them (it doesn't hurt!), observe, take note, and practice techniques to change what we want to make better.
When they know exactly what they're doing that is or isn't working, and how to change it, they can make permanent improvements!
What words are you choosing?
Is the vocabulary you're using appropriate for clients? Or for other professionals with a similar background to you? Does your wording sometimes sound abrupt? Wishy washy-"Just, like, well, actually..."? These tendencies do nothing for your verbal brand.
Is your language clear and direct? Use too many words and people don't receive your message as powerfully and will be less likely to follow your call to action. That's an ineffective verbal brand. You can easily change this losing formula for a winning one by paying attention to the words you use and learning how to be more succinct.
Ways to Nurture Your Verbal Brand
Every time you speak with people in your daily life, be it in a conversation or a presentation, is an opportunity to observe, experiment with, or tweak your verbal brand. Just saying, "How are you doing?" in a gorgeous, fully resonant voice makes people feel great. Pair it with a smile, and guess who has a new admirer? ;)
A musician learns from a music teacher, a tennis player learns from a coach... Whether you know it or not, you have a verbal brand; and yes, you definitely have to work at it-because it represents you. I challenge you to record yourself-don't be afraid! Analyze what you hear and what you see; think about what you've read here. The results will be life-changing.
If you need help making your verbal brand come across as capable, authoritative and marvelous as you are, I'm here for you!