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The Green Sheet Online Edition

February 08, 2016 • Issue 16:02:01

Boost Your Biz: Verbal appeal

When you began your career as a merchant level salesperson how much attention did you and those training you give to your voice. This aspect of sales presentations is integral to success, but it is often addressed only superficially.

Many people believe voice quality is determined by genetics and don't give it much conscious attention. However, many of the ways we converse are a matter of habit, not birth, and they can be improved substantially without undue effort.

If you haven't listened to a recording of yourself in action, you may be unaware of vocal factors that interfere with your ability to communicate. Three such factors are speed, volume and inflection. And they can be easily changed.

Three easy fixes

Some MLSs speak so quickly that their words seem more like an assault than an invitation to exchange ideas. These folks don't fully pronounce each word and don't pause to give listeners a chance to absorb what is being said. These habits interfere with prospects' ability to comprehend how what is being offered can solve their pressing problems. You can avoid this pitfall by making a point to slow down, enunciate clearly and pause at key points during a presentation.

When it comes to voice volume, some people are so soft spoken listeners have to strain to hear their words. Others have voices that fill a room and can make listeners self conscious, knowing other people in the room might be privy to what they consider to be private conversations. For this issue, working with a colleague to either increase or decrease volume to an appropriate level can work wonders.

Inflection is another tool that can make or break a presentation. If you have no inflection in your voice, it doesn't matter how soft or loud, quickly or slowly you speak; your voice will be a monotone that will bore your listeners to the extreme. Working to vary your inflection might take some effort, but with help from a colleague or from a voice coach, you can add a hint of music to your presentations that will greatly add to your appeal. end of article

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