When you speak in an authoritative tone, you get listened to. Using an authoritative tone has some negative connotations in the past. Some people may perceive sounding authoritative as bossy, rude or condescending.
How do you train your voice, so that your message gets listened to? How do you speak, so that you sound confident and knowledgeable?
Authority comes from these few factors:
- Looking confident
- Lower pitched voice
- Stronger emphasis
- Vocal tone which inflects down at the end of sentences
- Confident and articulate flow
- Looking confident: When you look confident, you sound confident. This is an important skill to master, even when the listener cannot see you. You need adopt a power pose or appropriate body language even when behind a mic. Stand in a relaxed, balanced way, so that you speak from your body, rather than head.
- Lower pitched voice : You can achieve a lower pitched voice by improving your resonance. A resonant voice is created by doing the following exercises : Yawn/sigh.
- Emphasis : Place emphasis on words that you want to sound authoritative on. You can emphasise words by increasing the stress on the word, and by increasing volume. Or you can simply pause before you say a sentence. You will have your audience leaning in their chairs and hanging onto your every word.
- Falling tone end of sentences: As a general rule, the falling tone at the end of a sentence is used for statements and commands and indicates certainty. When the tone is rising, it indicates a question or uncertainty. A rising tone definitely does not indicate an authoritative voice!
- Confident and articulate flow: Some people sound dysfluent when answering questions. This is due to uneven breath flow and inadequate breath patterns. Your speech will be fluent when you take a breath.