It’s far different than the NBC-TV contest of coaches and wannabe singers.
Yet it’s similar in its appeal to the heart.
Helping craft “the voice” is one of the most fundamental and most critical jobs we as communicators, designers, and marketers can undertake for our leaders, our corporations, and, yes, ourselves. It’s also one of the most challenging.
For leaders, the voice must reflect how they support and help, coach and deliver feedback, articulate the vision, and give context and meaning to events inside and outside the business. It mirrors their style, their personality – and is consistent, clear, and certain. Of course, given the state of the world, it will also flex to demands and to situations that might be beyond anyone’s control.
A big task?
Combine it with the goal of defining the corporate voice – and then sometimes, things go awry. Voices of leaders and companies are often intertwined. Among the most familiar: Steve Jobs and Apple, Jack Welch and General Electric, Ray Kroc and McDonald’s.
It’s when there’s a disconnect, a note of inauthenticity that the voice wobbles. Sometimes, it takes a while for a new leader to pave the way for a re-set of the voice, time to figure out how the two gestalts merge. And often, employees are the first to identify the variations; usually, front liners will speak up (especially if they’re encouraged to do so).
Starting right is, in our eyes, the best fix. Stay tuned …