This month’s theme is on leadership voices. To help us close this topic, we thought we should interview a radio personality to talk about voice. The following is our conversation with local radio host, Bruce Bond. I think this interview speaks for itself.
While it would appear that voice tone and radio broadcasting go hand-in-hand, we don’t want to make any assumptions. Do you believe that a radio personality needs to have a certain voice in order to enjoy a successful career?
I don’t think they need to have a particular voice, but I believe that voice can sometimes be developed. For example, if you are doing radio 6 days a week, after doing that for 4 or 5 years it’s garnered as time goes on.
That doesn’t mean that if someone goes into broadcasting as a mumbler that they can’t go on as a broadcaster. Where I grew up I had a ‘regionalism problem,’ because I had a PA Dutch background. Basically, it’s saying words a certain way. I wasn’t perfect when I got into radio, and I had to distance myself from that way of talking. In some ways, you need to have a neutral sound in broadcasting.
There’s a direct correlation between the way a verbal message is delivered (voice, pitch, tone, etc) and the way the message is perceived by the audience. Can you give us some techniques about how you modify your voice to match the message?
I’ve done this the most with commercials because there are time constraints to consider. Most copy needs to be read in 60 seconds. I’ve found that using comedy, anger or excitement works for a message that must be delivered quickly.
What’s your ‘best’ voice? In other words, what voice compels your audience to take action?
I feel that you have to be natural, authentic, and passionate about what you do. There were times when I listened to tapes of some of my old broadcasts where I thought I was being a cool DJ and realized that that version of “cool” wasn’t what the audience really wanted. Listeners can tell when you are genuine.
When I was in New York doing voice overs, sometimes they were almost too polished and sometimes I had to do two or three takes because the producers felt it was not genuine.
People these days are just having normal conversations with each other to get a message across to the audience.
From your perspective, how much of a role does voice play in leadership? In influence?
It’s confidence. If you communicate with confidence in whatever you say or do, you can get your message across to who you are talking to–and it can motivate them.
Finish this sentence: A leadership voice is —-
Confidence. If you are confident about what you are doing or talking about, you can get people excited about something. Confident people can get you pumped up; they can motivate you to buy, sell or do something that may be out of your comfort zone.
When I was growing up, I was mainly influenced by other DJ’s because I wanted to do what they were doing. There was a guy in Philly named Dan Donavan who was on an AM Top 40 Station. I always looked up to him. He was very confident and knew what he was doing.
Bruce Bond is the host of the Bruce Bond Late Afternoon Show, which airs on Saturday morning from 9 a.m. to noon on WTPA 92.1. (Yup, you read that correctly)!