A Conversation with Ben Afia, An Expert In Helping Companies Be More Human
On this episode of Re-thinking the Human Factor, Ben Afia joins Bruce Hallas in a discussion around “Tone of voice”.
Tone of voice deals with the brand and personality of an organization coming through in language, in words, and this personality stems from values, both personal as well as those of a broader organizational culture. Ben is a consultant, writer and speaker on brand strategy, language and change.
“We’re talking about how we influence behaviour, especially within organizations with people who can choose to be influenced or not…I don’t think you actually need to be that heavy-handed to achieve the right outcome of protecting an organization.”
How to connect with your audience and improve engagement
Join Ben Afia and Bruce Hallas as they discuss:
- The importance of getting the tone of voice right in relation to the creation and implementation of effective policies within an organization
- How tone of voice can bring to life an organization’s brand (or hurt their brand)
- Paradoxically, though tone of voice is largely about one’s brand and organizational personality, it’s also important to understand one’s audience when building and applying tone-of-voice guidelines, because it’s also about them, and it’s about understanding what your audience will be able to actually hear
- Heavy-handed vs. lighter, more engaging, more human communication methods
- The importance of having a well-defined brand and well-defined values when coming up with tone-of-voice guidelines
- The need to get broad stakeholder engagement, not from the very top of the organization, but also all the way down if the goal is an organization-wide change
“I think that your tone of voice and your values then have to flex depending on the local circumstance.”
QUESTIONS FOR FURTHER STUDY AND RESEARCH
- What is your tone of voice?
- Does it really reflect your brand?
- How well do people engage with that?
- Do your communications have any element of tone of voice or are you just getting your team to write without any direction regarding how you want to appear, to be perceived by your audience when they receive your message?
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