As a professional actor, performer, and voice coach I sometimes take it for granted that amazing vocal presence is essential to my work.

What I also take for granted are the tools I use every day to achieve great vocal presence. I forget that my go-to vocal tools are not only effective for me but easily implemented by you to get the results you want from your business communications.

You can use the same skills I do to get a strong, engaging vocal delivery in your presentations and speeches. It just takes a bit of knowledge, a good bit of practice and determination, and a great vocal coach to guide you.

Here are 4 of my Top Go-To Vocal Skills that you can use right now to up the ante on your vocal presence and vocal delivery.

Release The Tension: Release Your Voice

Tension is your voice’s worst enemy. Relaxation is its best friend.

Remember that your body is your voice and your voice is your body. So any tension in your body is going to impede developing an amazing vocal presence.

Your shoulders are a minefield when it comes to tension so give them a bit of love and attention. When you bring ATTENTION to the TENSION, the tension will release.

First, bring your shoulders all the way up towards your ears, hold for 3 seconds, and then release down. Do this 3 times.

You’ll also find that when you release your shoulders, your breath will release as well. Your body is very smart. Release the tension and the breath will release as well.

Next, shoulder rolls. Roll your shoulders forward for a count of 10, then roll backwards for a count of 10. This should be an easy movement, not forcing it; remember, you’re bringing attention to the area, not stretching or pushing.

Hum To Warm Up Your Vocal Range

Humming is a great way to warm up your vocal range and your vocal muscles. It’s gentle and takes away any strain from the neck or vocal folds (the muscles inside the throat that create sound and vibration).

When you warm up your vocal range, you’re also less likely to have a flat, monotone vocal delivery. You’ll have more choices to get more colour, texture, and musicality into your delivery and keep people listening.

Humming also gets your vocal muscles ready to work. If you’re getting ready to go into a meeting or give a presentation, this is perfect to get your voice ready to go.

Start in the lowest part of your vocal range, way down deep, then slowly slide up your range all the way to the highest part of your vocal range. Then, slide back down again. Repeat this 3 times.

If you picture an elevator moving from the basement floor all the way up to the penthouse, this will really help!

Breathing Is Key For Amazing Vocal Presence

I know, it sound simple. And yes, it is simple. But breathing gives you a lot of bang for your buck when it comes to creating and developing an amazing vocal presence.

Not only does breathing help to ground and center your energy but it is the key support for a strong, confident vocal sound.

Here’s an exercise: Sit in a chair and make sure you’re sitting in a centered way so your back is supported by the chair and you’re not slumped or slouched.

Close your eyes and put one hand on your lower belly and one hand on your upper chest. Think of bringing your breath right down into the hand on your lower belly.

It can really help to think of your belly being soft and allowing it to gently move out when the breath comes in, and release back in again when you release the breath out.

The fancy name for this is Diaphragmatic Breathing. But the nuts and bolts of it is that you’re breathing into your lower belly and hips.

Breathing deep into this area will give you a higher quality of breath so you can support the sound of your voice and support your voice so it doesn’t get tired. Very important!

Your Face Is Key For Clear Speaking

This sounds weird, right? Well let me tell you, you hold a LOT of tension around your mouth and in your facial muscles. And this gets in the way of speaking clearly, with variety, and with energy.

Your mouth, tongue, and face muscles are responsible for articulation. So, the tension you hold in your face is directly proportional to the colour, textures, and intention you get into the words you say.

Move the skin around on your face, kiss and grin, blow through your lips like a horse, and shake the skin off your face. All these releasing exercises will get the blood pumping into your facial and articulating muscles and get things moving and ready to communicate.

You MUST stretch out the muscles in your face in order to get ready to articulate. If your face is dead and lifeless, so will your words be!

Simple But Effective Wins The Day

These are just a few simple exercises that will help you warm up your voice and get your speaking muscles ready to perform.

All great performers and speakers warm up and everybody does something a little different. But all great speakers do SOMETHING.

Now you have vocal exercises to get you warmed up and ready to communicate. Muscles that are awake and ready means a voice that is awake and ready. Ready? And breathe…..