It is Saturday morning and I just received a phone call on my business line from a man who was doing a survey. The person he wanted to speak to had to be male and had to be over 21. [Thankfully, I was able to respond politely that I did not ‘fit the bill’ and proceeded to quickly end the call. Why do I think this was a Viagra phone call?] What annoyed me was that the young man on the other end of the phone was so soft-spoken that it was difficult to hear him; plus, because his diction was unintelligible, it was difficult to understand him as well.
If you are hiring people to speak on the behalf of your company, your business, or your firm, why would you not seek those who speak the language well and are able to be understood by all? I am not talking about accents or dialects: I am talking specifically about those who are difficult to understand even without an accent or dialect. Your telephone is your lifeline for your business. If you expect to succeed, how can you think that your business will do well if we, the listeners, cannot understand those you have hired to speak on your behalf?
This is beyond my understanding. If your requirements are just to have a warm body in a chair that is capable of delivering a memorized script over the phone, then go ahead and hire that body.
If, on the other hand, you actually want to sell something, then it would pay you to find people who are comfortable speaking the English language, who speak with enough volume, and who are able to carry on a conversation.
This is a no-brainer. And, yes, I am mad. It angers me every time I pick up the phone from some company that is trying to make sure my business address hasn’t changed for their directory. Once you answer their questions, they then try to move you over to their manager to ‘verify the information.’ That verification is only a means of trying to sell you something. Unfortunately, those types of calls often happen on a daily basis and I am tired of the ruse.
1. If you want me to listen to the person on the other end of the line, make sure I can hear them.
2. If you want me to stay on the line, make sure I can understand them.
3. If you want me to pay attention, then hire someone who can communicate with me.
Please, for the sake of your listeners and the success of your own business, why not include in your hiring specifications, “Must speak the language clearly and distinctly.” You might be surprised at how much more profitable it will be for your business.
The Voice Lady Nancy Daniels offers private, corporate and group workshops in voice and presentation skills as well as Voicing It!, the only video training program on voice improvement. Visit Voice Dynamic and watch Nancy as she describes The Power of Your Speaking Voice.