Does your recognition sound hollow? Has anyone shared how your recognition doesn’t come across as meaningful to people?
Maybe you need to pay more attention to your voice.
How you sound when speaking to people can affect their perception of you. Your tone of voice can also influence how they interpret what you say.
Employees subconsciously judge your attitude towards them from each conversational interaction they have with you – all from the sound of your voice.
They will question what you say to them as to whether it’s sincere or phony based on how you say things. Your voice will change how a person responds to you and whether they believe what you say to them.
Employees will perceive verbally expressed recognition more authentically and meaningfully when said with the right voice.
The Conveyor Of Authenticity
Let’s take a closer look at your tone of voice as a way of giving real recognition.
You may be asking yourself, how can I develop a positive tone of voice?
One of the ways to do this is to become more conscious of the various elements of your voice.
Your voice is like a musical instrument. By playing the right keys, chords and musical volume your voice can create the desired emphasis you need to positively impact people.
In order to understand how to create a positive tone of voice, you must first learn about the various elements of your voice.
Consider the following aspects of your voice:
Pitch: which is the high or low note ranges of your voice
Volume: is obviously the loudness or soft quality of your voice
Rhythm: is the inflection or the ups and downs of your speech
Tempo: is how fast or slow you speak which also includes the use of pausing
And, Timbre, which is the emotional quality of your voice that you convey.
Expressing Recognition With Your Voice
Why is it important to use a variety of pitch, volume, rhythm, tempo and timbre in your voice?
You can inadvertently create problems between you and your employees when you don’t use your full voice.
With no variation in pitch, volume, rhythm, tempo and timbre of your voice, you speak with a flat monotone. Using a monotone voice loses the interest of people you’re talking to. It makes them think you don’t care about them and your recognition message seems unimportant and inauthentic.
Remember, vocal variety is essential for a positive relationship with your employees.
Think how you sound when you verbally express recognition and praise.
Next time there is a formal awards ceremony you are presenting at, have the audio-visual people video-recorded you presenting. Play back the recording with just listening to the sound alone. How did you come across? Did you sound as genuine as you thought? Was your recognition as meaningful and genuine as you want employees to think it is?
Learn to consciously use your voice as a tool to give more meaningful recognition.
Practice expressing surprise or excitement in your voice. Imagine, celebrating someone’s achievement using your voice this way.
Offer positive evaluative commentary on an accomplishment through rhythm and vocal inflection.
Enliven a direct quotation that someone said with a range of volume and timbre.
Engage an audience with narrative speech using your developed vocal repertoire.
Aim to express better appreciation by varying each vocal element: volume, pitch, rhythm, tempo and timbre.
Giving people authentic recognition becomes a true art form as you learn to better use your voice.
Next time you praise or recognize an employee try expressing genuine enthusiasm using your voice.
Let people hear your gratitude by how you say things.
Question: How are you using your voice to deliver effective recognition?
Roy is no longer writing new content for this site (he has retired!), but you can subscribe to Engage2Excel’s blog as Engage2Excel will be taking Roy’s place writing about similar topics on employee recognition and retention, leadership and strategy.
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