Can you hear me now

Can You Hear Me Now?

The truth is we can’t follow them unless our leaders are heard. They may have the most valuable information to lay down but if we can’t understand what they’re saying it doesn’t matter.

I find it frustrating when I’m listening to a Webinar and the speaker’s voice is loud then it’s quiet. I turn the speaker up, and turn it down.

As an audio technician what I find most grating is when the speaker’s voice is so close to the ceiling (means they’re approaching overdrive {means they’re almost distorting}) that it’s almost painful to listen. I’m so distracted because I know when they get excited “BAM!” the most important thing they had to say is lost to everyone.

Loud and Clear

During a ‘Leadership Branding’ Webinar with Mark Hoverson I realized that most of the people who communicate through the internet are either using the built in condenser microphones on their laptops or a $9.99 ‘cheapoid’ that plugs into the 1/8th inch microphone input jack.

Mark was blown away when he heard my voice and it seemed like the entire focus went sideways for a moment.

While most people aren’t that concerned with the quality of their voices over the internet, anyone who’s putting themselves forth as a leader, has a vested interest in the quality of their voice. Leaders are heard.

If you’re teaching through Webinars or recording videos for the purpose of teaching, being understood is the most important point.

It Isn’t The Internet

I’ve experienced poor audio quality both in live Webinar settings as well as recorded instructional videos. While most of these professionals understand the benefit of a professionally produced video or DVD for marketing or education, they haven’t made the connection to the every day communication to their team or for live training purposes.

I can’t speak for all computers but the majority with built in condenser microphones don’t perform any better than the ‘cheapiod’ mentioned above. Analog to digital conversion works best outside the computer.

USB Audio Interface

The USB audio interface followed a natural pattern established in the digital recording environment. Changing audio signals to digital signals outside of the computer allowed for better signal quality. The first interfaces were designed to work directly into PCI slots for PC’s and Firewire ports for MAC.

I’ve posted a short video on my Blog ( explaining how using a USB Audio Interface can dramatically improve the audio quality into and out of your computer. If you take your business with you and conduct meetings from hotel rooms, the USB Microphones shown won’t take a lot of packing space.

This investment isn’t for everyone but we all know when our leaders are heard and when they’re not. They won’t be offended if you share this article with them. Leaders know how to listen as well.

Having said that, if you want to be heard and recognized, I was… I wasn’t expecting it, but as soon as I opened my mouth to say can you hear me, it was a show stopper.

Get heard… get a USB audio interface.

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