«Shall I tell you something?..»

I continue to write commentaries about service, this piece will be about the role of the voice in “games people play”.

What is important in a phone conversation between two people is voice register (I am not talking about automated systems and robots).  Register is the relative height of voice tone. Neutral register is a normal voice, and there are also upper and lower registers.  Lower voice, depending on a situation, can convey either domination or seduction.


A tone of voice higher than normal can mean: “I do not believe in what I am saying, but it is an official communication we have” or “I am feeling slightly awkward, I am afraid that you might respond angrily, so I am trying to say something which sounds right”.


When a straightforward question is not answered and instead a high-pitch voice is either preaching or quoting some obvious truisms – nobody likes it.  On a prepared script, recited in a high pitch voice, some clients will say: “Please do not go on, I see you don’t know” while others can call the operator a “robot” or “parrot”.

As for a low voice, which sounds almost conspiratory – it does not, as a rule, cause a negative reaction, because generally people like low tone of voice. However, attempts to gain trust with a nice low voice and then sell clients something they do not need – this is not good form. Not a style you or I would recommend, right? Let call centre workers always speak in an authentic voice, and let them always have necessary and fresh information at hand.  More interesting things about human speech, and not only, from Marina Novikova-Grund (link below).

It’s good when you can speak with your own voice and breathe freely. And be yourself.

Here is an exercise Irina Vanyukhina (yogaatwork.ru) recommends:  sit comfortably with a straight back and chant different vowels (or a prolong sound “ohmm”). At the same time, feel how the sound resonates inside the body and creates vibration in the chest.  The opening of the chest and relaxation of the diaphragm, different yoga exercise and breathing techniques will also help bring greater strength and clarity to the voice.