It’s not so quantifiable.
But we know when somebody’s word usage or inflection is off.
Have you ever met somebody who drives you crazy? Every word out of their mouth makes you nuts. Try this trick: as you listen to them on the phone, the TV or at a meeting, write down every word that they say verbatim. Later, read the words in your own voice (try to take their voice out of it.) You’ll be surprised. Sometimes the words themselves are actually palatable. Sometimes (gasp!), they are even right. But their tone is wrong, whether it’s their inflection, their nasality, their body language, or just your rejection of them in general. No matter what words they say, they can’t (easily) reach you.
Part of every business is actually your brand and your tone.
Your tone can be your demeanor, your mien, as you interact with clients and patients. It can be the presence or absence of humor in your line of work. It can be the way your office is decorated.
Your tone should be reflected in anything that represents you: your social media posts, your website, any ads that you pay for and sponsorships of charitable endeavors all should reflect your business and your tone.
Retail environments can allow a certain whimsy and even off-kilter tone in their work.
Medical offices tend to have a friendly, but serious tone. Where HIPAA rules supreme, being too friendly in the waiting area is not advisable. Pediatricians can be a little more genial than oncologists.
Law offices tend to have an all-business demeanor in public shared areas, but the tone in each attorney’s area can reflect their interests and can be quirky, to a degree. The more corporate business you do, probably the less quirky you should be.
But that doesn’t mean that all blogs and social media posts have to be bland. Strongly held opinions can still be expressed. Humor can be injected when appropriate. And even heartfelt emotion can be expressed.
One tone that tends to fall on deaf ears in social media posts is a self-serving one. Blogs and posts can be informative or or entertaining and occasionally uplifting. But using these platforms to constantly toot your own horn gets old, sounds flat and may cause people to unlike your page or quit reading your posts altogether.
Check Your Tone: Use the same trick with the annoying speaker as above: Go back and look at a few months’ worth of posts and blogs. Can you discern a tone or a brand from the posts? How would you tweak it? Which posts or blogs do you feel represent your authentic voice and/or the voice that represents what you do and how you operate? Do more of what you like and less of what you don’t!