4 Ways To Improve Your Diction And Increase Your Sales

As a call center worker, you understand the importance of developing a rapport with your customers, but are you forgetting your most important tool— diction? Whether you make contact with the customer via phone or voice chat, the customer's impression of your company and its products depends in part on how clearly you speak. Here are some simple ways to get your message across.

Sit up straight

Your mother was right. Posture matters. Because your customer can't see your face, your voice has to convey your interest and sincerity. Slouching can make you sound quavery and uncertain, or bored and uninvolved. Produce a strong, confident voice by following these tips:

  • Sit up straight, with your shoulders back
  • Take a deep breath before you begin speaking
  • Breath from your diaphragm, so that your tummy moves, not your shoulders
  • Don't clench your jaw. Keep it relaxed to avoid mumbling.

Listen, listen, listen!

Listen to your calls, and pay attention to how your voice sounds. Is your pronunciation clear and authoritative? Do you speak at a comfortable rate or so fast that it sounds like you think the customer might run away? If you use candy or gum to keep you mouth moist, check to be sure no one can hear any telltale clicking or smacking sounds.  

Listen to other professionals who speak for a living. Newscasters must be understood by audiences all across the world. Their pronunciation and speed are designed to work for listeners from many different backgrounds. If customers have trouble understanding you, pick a role model from television or radio to copy at work. It may seem strange at first, but soon you'll be switching on your work voice every time you put on your headset.

Have a good vocabulary

A solid vocabulary is vital for anyone who communicates for a living. Take the time to look up words if you aren't absolutely sure of the meaning. Use a dictionary website that includes recordings, so you can learn the standard pronunciation.

Beware of heteronyms. These are two words that are spelled the same way, but have different meanings and different pronunciations. For example, a person might conTRACT a disease or sign a legal CONtract. Using the wrong pronunciation could give your customer a bad impression.

See your dentist

You might not think of tooth trouble as something that interferes with speech, but the lips, tongue, and teeth work together to form words. A damaged tooth or poorly fitting dentures can make a person mumble or whistle when speaking. Your dentist can help you speak more clearly and feel better.

Working a call center is a demanding career. Good diction helps build customer trust and produce sales—as well as commissions.