Vocal cues can determine authority in group

Vocal cues can determine authority in group
Highlights

A new study has provided a deeper insight into how people are able to pick up on the vocal cues to know who is really in charge.

Washington: A new study has provided a deeper insight into how people are able to pick up on the vocal cues to know who is really in charge.

According to the research being in a position of power can fundamentally change the way you speak, altering basic acoustic properties of the voice and listeners are quite perceptive to these subtle variations in vocal cues and they use these cues to decide who is in charge.
People tend to focus on our words when we want to come across as powerful to others, but these findings suggest that basic acoustic cues also play an important role.
Psychological scientist Sei Jin Ko of San Diego State University said that whether it's parents attempting to assert authority over unruly children or negotiations between heads of states, the sound of the voices involved might profoundly establish the result of those interactions.
The researchers had long been interested in non-language-related properties of speech, but it was former UK Prime Minister MargaretThatcher that inspired them to investigate the relationship between acoustic cues and power.
In line with the vocal changes observed in the first experiments, listeners tended to associate higher pitch and voices that varied in loudness with high-power behaviors. They also associated louder voices with higher power .
The research is published in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science.
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