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Setting the tone

Updated: Aug 8, 2022

It's not what you say, it's how you say, at least in most cases. What do I mean by that exactly? Our tone is a vital part of the communication we have with others. When speaking, our tone will directly affect how the information we are conveying will be taken. How many times have you been busy, been asked a question, and came off as being a little short? While you were not intentionally being short, the other person took it a different way. Yes, they could be reading into it but nonetheless, that is how it was perceived.

As leaders we not only have to be aware of everything going on around us but we need to be aware of how we are communicating. Now, I'm not talking about walking on eggshells, but the tone we use will alter someone's day for the good or the bad. Whatever the message, your tone plays a critical role in your teams performance.

Being aware of how we use our tone is an ongoing learning experience. You have to be focused on how you convey the information to make sure it lands with the right intention. Mastering your tone will bring a new energy to your business, team, friends, and family. Tone intern sets the tone for those around you, that's why it is referred to it as "setting the tone". Using the right tone can take a negative experience and turn it into a more positive uplifting interaction. While using the wrong tone can set a negative precedent into an otherwise positive experience.

To help master your tone, practice taking a step back to collect your thoughts before responding. Yes, it may be hard to delay a response for those few seconds but taking that time gives more insight and clarity on how you should respond. The more often you step back to assess, the easier it will be to make decisions and not come off as short, uninterested, or down right rude.

Controlling our tone gives way to expanded communication to those around us. Not only is this great on a personal level, but when your team is more comfortable with your communication, then you no longer have to play Sherlock Holmes to get vital information for the business.

Part of tone control is self assessment. As a leader you should be re-evaluating yourself on a consistent basis. Re-evaluation plays a critical role in your personal and professional growth. Re-evaluating can help you identify deficiencies in your tasks, the weak spots in your communication, and gives you insight on how you should lead. You should always be looking to unlock new areas of improvement to grow upon and become more rounded. True leaders understand that in order to help those around them, they need to understand their own path of growth first.

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