Tone of Voice

12 November 2010 Categories: Gerry's Corner

        Here is another complaint or observation on today’s Technology. I truly believe that we are losing something very valuable and important in communications by relying more and more on Electronics. Text messaging and the likes is not the same as talking to the person. You lose the most important element which is the tone of voice. Even voicemail does not do justice compared to the real person. You say a phrase 10 times in various tones and you can convey 10 different meanings. Take the important phrase   “ I love you “ One tone could convey words only yet with another tone give a warm feeling to the person we are saying it to. Electronics have not evolved to that degree. Reading a sentence or message does not give you the real meaning of the message or the opportunity to ask for clarification. In relationships this could mean the difference between strengthening a relationship or breaking up. The communications between child/adolescent and parent and vice versa is critical to get it right the first time.

        In Business this could mean the difference between getting a sale orlosing sale. Here is a case in point. I have been looking for an item that is difficult to find. I wanted to find it locally so I could see it before buying. An Internet purchase was out of the question. I very seldom buy on the Internet anyway. I started calling certain specialty stores to find out if they carried this particular item. I called this one store and was lucky enough to have the owner answer the phone. I asked about the item and she genuinely felt bad that she did not have this product or related products. She proceeded to ask me if I tried this store and other stores. Her tone of voice was conveying a deep concern that she disappointed a customer or potential customer. I thanked her and she wished me not only to have a good day but also success with my search to find this item. I got off the phone with her, paused and thought about our conversation then said to myself   “ She was so genuine, polite and accommodating I feel great about this conversation. I think, I will visit her store, thank her in person and see what is in her store.” Had she been rushed, rude or just have a colder tone of voice then I would never visit her store.

        Years ago some companies trained people for face to face service like Banks or for telephone service and support. Their training in part was to skill practice while looking in a mirror. The concept was relatively simple: Would you buy from this person in the mirror? Would you want to talk to this person who is not smiling in the mirror? “

      In Business and personal life take the time to talk to people and mind your tone of voice rather than electronically communicate, it will always serve you better. No one minds talking to a happy voice. No one can get mad at a happy voice. Use your happy voice and have yourself a great day.