Did you know that the sound of a person’s voice can strongly influence how he or she is seen?
WJS’s Sue Shellenbarger’s article this week entitled “Is this how you really talk” spoke about “Quantified Impressions” in Austin Texas, who recently used computer software to analyse speakers voices. They then collected feedback from a panel of 10 experts and 1,000 listeners.
The results were fascinating! – The content of the message accounted for only 11% of listeners evaluations whereas voice quality accounted for 23%. Other factors which ranked high in the evaluation were the speakers passion, knowledge and presence.
According to another study of 74 adults published recently in the Journal of Voice, speakers with normal voices are seen as successful, sexy, sociable and smart whereas speakers with rough, weak, strained or breathy voices were labeled as negative, weak, passive or tense.
“We are hard-wired to judge people. You hear somebody speak, and the first thing you do is to form an opinion about them,” says Lynda Stucky president of ClearlySpeaking, a Pittsburgh coaching company.
Other vocal irritants include“uptalk”— pronouncing statements as if they were questions — and “vocal fry“— ending words in a raspy growl. Such quirks “make the listener think the person who is speaking is either uncomfortable or in pain,” says Brian Petty, a speech pathologist from the Emory Voice Center in Atlanta.
On the lighter side, watch this clip for a fun example of an annoying voice…enjoy…
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