As you may recall, I opened my practice in 1994. Ever since then I’ve heard a few questions raised repeatedly. Typically my response has remain unchanged but let’s see why.

Today while conducting a 1/2 day business communication workshop, I presented the topic of Vocal Image Profile (V.I.P.). Of the 7 elements I present when discussing one’s V.I.P. is articulation and its impact in business. My audiences seem to concur that how one articulates is vitally important as a factor in how we’re perceived. So far so good.

In the workshop I delve into some of the most frequently occurring errors and how to correct them. One aspect is the problem of mispronouncing words which can manifest itself in the following ways: omitting sounds, adding sounds, and reversing sounds. When it comes to adding sounds, I use the example of “realtor” which is pronounced with two syllables. You may have noticed that people will often add an additional syllable and say “realator.” Similarly, instead of saying “realty” an additional syllable changes this to “realaty.” Sorry to break the news but…realator and realaty are both examples of misarticulation. When we misarticulate, we run the risk of others judging us negatively.

What I encounter is that when this point comes up, I’m often asked if it’s okay to intentionally say these words incorrectly in order to FIT IN vs. risk standing out in the crowd. My answer is a resounding NO! Here’s why: I’d rather not “fit in” by saying a word correctly vs. fitting in for the wrong reason. To me, that’s too high a cost to pay for fitting in. How about you? Let me know where you stand on this controversial topic.