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Your Volume Control - Speak Up and Be Heard

Nancy Daniels, Voice Coach

ome years ago, I was attending a Chamber of Commerce event in a large auditorium. 5 speakers were on the dais and during the program, the amplification system broke down. The result was that the 5 speakers were not able to be heard in the back of the room. So, at first, those of us who were not within ‘earshot,’ sat quietly. It was not long, however, before the back of the room took on a noise level of its own with people shuffling papers, clearing their throats, getting up and leaving, and some even starting conversations amongst themselves.

If others are not able to hear you when you are speaking at an event, sitting at a boardroom table, or holding a sales conference, they will stop trying to hear you. Straining to hear becomes tiring and frustrating which can result in loss of business for you.

It is your duty – it is your responsibility to make yourself heard if you are going to speak. No matter the occasion, no matter the reason, it you choose to open your mouth and comment, present, or engage in dialogue, you must speak at a normal volume level if you want to be understood. If the occasion calls for more volume, it is then your responsibility to learn how to speak with more power.

If others are not able to hear you when you are speaking, they will stop trying to hear you.
In the situation of the Chamber of Commerce event, it was the responsibility of the speakers to increase their volume beyond a normal volume level so that all in attendance could hear. Unfortunately, they were unaware that for many in the room, their words were unheeded. Even when the commotion began to arise in the back of the auditorium, the 5 speakers did not know that their words were not carrying very far.

Have you ever tried to speak to someone in another room of your home without increasing your volume? It generally does not work. (A loud nasal voice admittedly will carry – unfortunately, a loud nasal voice is not pleasant to hear!) One of the greatest problems I encounter with my clientele is that they do not know how to increase their volume properly.
Trying to 'raise your voice' will only hurt your throat and vocal folds (cords).

Trying to ‘raise your voice’ will only hurt your throat and vocal folds (cords). Learning how to project your voice, however, will solve the problem. Projection is the ability to power your voice from your chest instead of your throat, your voice, your mouth, and/or your nose. The resulting sound will be warmer, richer, deeper, and resonant. It also means that you will be able to cheer for your favorite sports team without losing your voice!

Without a voice, most of us in business would have no business. Without a voice that can be heard, most of us in business would have no business. If you want others to listen to you, they must first be able to hear you.

Without a voice that can be heard, most of us in business would have no business

International Speaker and Voice Specialist, Nancy Daniels, has been involved in voice training since 1977. A graduate of Gettysburg College with a BA in music, she discovered the techniques for improving the sound of the speaking voice while in graduate school at American University in Washington, D.C.

In addition to her guest speaking engagements, Nancy offers private, corporate and group workshops in voice training and public speaking skills throughout the United States and Canada. For those are unable to work with her directly, there is Voicing It!, the only video training program on voice improvement. For more information on voice training, future workshops, and Voicing It!, visit her Voice Dynamic website. http://www.voicedynamic.com


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