Your Online Voice – How to sound more confident and engaging in online meetings, presentations and conversations.
If you thought that sounding confident in person was challenging, doing this online has taken on a whole new dimension! Absent the opportunity to convey a “full bodied” communication experience in the room, we’re having to rely, primarily, on our face and voice to get our point across effectively.
Recently, I was asked: “How does one sound more confident and engaging online?” “What can I do to have the voice of a confident person, or respectable leader?”
That’s actually a great question, so let me start first with what a confident voice doesn’t sound like:
- Riddled with hesitations and filler words, such as “um”, “like”, “you know”.
- Too soft and low in energy
- Too fast and lacking pauses
- Monotone and flat, lacking in tonal variety
- Gravelly (aka as “vocal fry”)
- Uptalk (sounding like a question?)
In an online context, those characteristics will undermine your ability to engage your audience. (And conversely, a voice that sounds too harsh or cold will also disengage people).
So, how does a confident voice sound? Typically, a confident voice is:
- Devoid of any filler words
- Loud enough and dynamic
- Varied in tone
- Drops at the end of a sentence, unless there’s a question
So, if you notice yourself falling flat throughout your communication, lacking energy or not conveying the necessary authority, just try a few of these tips:
- Slow down
- Pause more frequently to breathe
- Project your voice by looking into the camera
- Emphasize key words
Just one of those things will help your voice sound more confident, so that you can better influence and elevate your leadership – online and in person!