Monday, December 26, 2016

3 ways to build trust in your business

Written by

Sridharan NairManaging Partner, PwC
I don´t think any CEO (or, for that matter, any layperson) would disagree with me if I said that being trusted is a powerful asset for a business. It makes sense that if you are in business, you would want your customers, employees, shareholders, the regulators, the man on the street and media to trust you, rather than the other way around.

We can relate to trust because we exercise it all the time in our everyday lives. Think about our willingness to pay more for organic vegetables because we believe these specially grown produce are better for our health. And in my case, my faith in the UK retailer Marks & Spencer when I was a trainee accountant in London many years ago, on their promise of no-questions-asked refunds for returned goods.

But when it comes to their own organizations, many business leaders struggle to place a value on being trusted. They might think that it’s a good-to-have, but practically impossible to measure. They most likely agree that trust is important but perhaps not urgent, especially in a time of severe cost pressures, talent woes and depressed market conditions.

I firmly believe that trust can be a tangible asset for a business, one that can grow the bottom line and which will see you through the difficult times. So what if I were to say that there is a way to measure trust – and that it does bring quantifiable and long-term financial benefit to your business?

Can you measure trust?
Over the past few years, PwC has conducted research, run focus groups and talked to both leading experts as well as the everyday person on the topic of trust. Our question was: what makes up trust in a business – and can it be quantified?
We found that trust could indeed be measured. For many people, trust could be boiled down to three key elements. When considering if a company should be called trustworthy, people are looking for:

· Competence Does the organization do what it says it will?
People expect companies to be reliable and transparent. A fast-food company should be upfront about the possibility their delivery will be delayed, for example. In cases of major delay, companies should be forthright about not even accepting the customer’s order. Fast food is supposed to be “fast”, after all.

· Experience Does the organization keep its promises?
Companies are expected to be responsive, to listen to public feedback, to make the necessary improvements and treat customers as individuals. (My experience with Marks & Spencer’s high-quality and consistent customer service comes to mind again.)

· Values Do you believe in the organization?
People want brands to understand their needs, to hold the right sort of principles and to care about their impact on society. Clothing retailers that source their cotton from fair trade suppliers are increasingly in demand because they are not seen to be exploiting cheap labour and because their products will benefit small-scale agricultural workers.

Why does trust matter?
Many of us can immediately call to mind the damage that happens to your brand when you lose trust – think of a recent vehicle emissions scandal as one example. But what of the opposite? What’s the positive financial impact of having existing trust with customers, employees, investors?

The first is customer loyalty. To quote the World Economic Forum’s Leadership, Trust and Performance Equation Project, trust drives 22% to 44% of overall customer loyalty. Research shows that organisations with loyal customers are twice as likely to exceed the forecasts of financial analysts.
Then there are your employees, often your most prized asset. In Fortune’s 100 Best Places to Work study, they found that top-ranked companies who were better trusted by their people, experience up to 50% less staff turnover than their competitors. Looking at the results over the past 10 years, higher trust scores and profits are actually correlated.

In the face of all this evidence, you many wonder what (if anything) businesses and their people can do about their level of trustworthiness. Is it possible to purposefully and methodically build your reservoir of trust with the stakeholders that matter to you?

Can you build trust?
The answer is of course a yes. And I don’t think it has to be complicated. Because trust is an age-old concept, one that is at the root of any successful relationship. Often, I’ve found that the steps to create trust can be simple, and are the same whether applied in our personal or professional lives. First, we have to behave in a trustworthy manner, consistently; second, we need to hear (and not just say that we “listen” to) our stakeholders; third, we should be clear about the sorts of values our organisation espouses. Yet, many leaders may struggle with keeping this consistent across their organisations, and perhaps that’s because trust building hasn’t yet been part of their business agenda.

My parting point is this. Beyond the fact that being trusted or trustworthy can bring your business immeasurable benefit, there is a more ethereal reason at stake here – where matters of the heart come into play.

Think of the numerous tales that have gone viral of good Samaritans on the road, strangers helping stranded fellow road users change their tyres While these are simple acts, today we are so used to being cautioned against road rage and carjacking, that hearing there are still people who only mean well, is heart-warming to say the least.

These stories resonate with all of us. The fact is in today’s climate there seems to be a real lack of faith in institutions - all over the world and closer to home in Malaysia. Yet, there is a deep desire in all of us to be able to put our faith in something.

So why can’t businesses be that something?

My challenge then to corporate leaders and those in business really is to bet our bottom dollar on trust-building, because it does make a difference. In my books, at the end of the day, it’s the only thing that does matter.

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

HGSCA Announces the Appointment of New Vice-President

Dic, 19, 2016

HGSCA is pleased to announce the appointment of Soledad Tanner as its new Vice President.  This is the first of several new key appointments to the organization’s leadership team. 

Soledad developed her extensive 26 years global finance career while working for Deutsche Post DHL (DP DHL), world headquarters in Bonn, Germany, as well as across America. As Global Director of Strategy, Performance & Metrics, HR she worked directly for a DP DHL board member. After DP DHL, she founded Soledad Tanner Consulting (STC), a consultancy that seeks to improve the profit and productivity of businesses. STC provides a diagnostic and implementation plan as well as coordinates the implementation of recommendations. (Source: Linkedin)

Luis Moyano, President of HGSCA, stated, “Soledad is another excellent addition to the HGSCA team as we continue planning for the year 2017. During her time in HGSCA as the Director of Public Relations, she helped to achieve the completion of many of the 2016 projects. Soledad's leadership and experience in successfully develop global business strategies with exposure to multicultural environments, financial Controlling, business plans,
project management execution to name a few, will play a key role for us as we prepare for the launch of new important projects that will benefit our communities."

Ms. Tanner succeeded former President in charge and Vice-President, Mr. Ernesto Cedeno, who was appointed as the new Vice President of HGSCA chapter Guayaquil in November 2016. Mr.CedeƱo departed to Guayaquil last November after taking the oath of office as the new Vice-President for Guayaquil.

To learn more about Soledad Tanner, you can click on the links below

+1 (832) 998 -2136

Monday, November 28, 2016

Anthony A. Ly - Doctor in Dental Surgery (DDS)

  • Analyze, evaluate and recommend strategic business changes to improve performance and productivity.
  • Highlight business opportunities for increased patient retention and profit.
  • Assess and coach strategic Human Resources and Management topics for increased staff synergies.

GerlD Med. Consultants - Infectious Disease & Geriatric Medicine

  • Improved collection procedures. 
  • Collection of aged receivables.

IFLN - Worlwide Logistic Network, Project & Supply Chain Management Provider

  • Implemented new automated financial management portal. 
  • Developed training material for a lighter version of financial system software.

Monday, November 21, 2016

STC Solutions

STC Brochure

2016 Business Symposium - University of St Thomas, Cameron School of Business

Facebook hashtag: #CSBSymposium16

Brenda Boral & Patricia Boral, Founders, Boral Branders talked about “Actionable SEO Techniques for the evolving business world"

Dr. Beena George, Dean of the Cameron School of Business. Mr. Mishal Kanoo, Chairman of The Kanoo Group and St. Thomas President Dr. Robert Ivany. The opening keynote speaker Mr Mishal Kanoo, Chairman of the Kanoo Group spoke about "Family Business and Global Competitive Forces".  The Kanoo Group is one of the largest, independent, and longest-running family owned groups of companies in the Gulf region.

South Houston Hispanic Chamber of Commerce - Soledad Tanner membership.

Networking events & Latinas without borders

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Soledad Tanner Business Card

ALPFA 2016 Leadership Summit (Soledad Tanner Panelist)

#SoledadTanner, #SoledadTannerConsulting, #ALPFA #Leadership #Empowerment #Inspiration

DP DHL the world’s leading postal and logistics group joins HGSCA to help the Ecuadorian Victims of the Earthquake

Nelly Moyano Fraga (HGSCA advisory board member), Yomaira Torres (Events Director), Soledad Tanner (Director of Public Relations), Craig Funck (DHL Express Field Supervisor), and Justin Lindsey (DHL Station Services Manager Houston) are present in the picture.

After contacting Anabella Menjivar, Executive Assistant of SVP Network

Operations, Soledad Tanner, HGSCA Director of Publlic Relations, was pleased to announce that DP DHL, the world’s leading postal and logistics group, has once again shown its commitment to social welfare and responsibility in joining HGSCA, GOYA Foods and the City of Guayaquil to help the Ecuadorian Victims of the Earthquake.

Mayte Sera-Weitzman (GOYA Foods Public Relations) communicated yesterday that GOYA is very honored to take part in such a wonderful humanitarian mission. DHL is expected to deliver 3418 pounds of food on Wednesday, April 27, 2016.

Once received, DHL Express Americas will take the Goya Food pallets from Houston to DHL Aviation in Miami for transport to Guayaquil, Ecuador. The food will be distributed to the victims by the City of Guayaquil under direct supervision of Maria Gloria Alarcon, appointed by Mayor, Jaime Nebot.

HGSCA advisory board member Nelly Moyano Fraga, who guided us to take the necessary steps to succeed in this endeavor and contacted Evelio Fernandez, GOYA Foods Vice-President, to request the donation, has expressed her gratitude towards all parties involved. 

We feel a great sense of responsibility to our people. However big or small this token of humanity, we understand this is just the beginning and are grateful to count on people such as Dr. Pedro Arguello, Hon. Jack Christie, Dr. Jorge Duchicela, Bolivar Fraga, Hon. Felix Fraga, Nelly Moyano Fraga, Hon. Robert Gallegos, Tony Grijalva, and Xavier Suniga in the days to come. As part of our advisory board, their wisdom and counsel will lead us to more effectively help our dear Ecuadorian community.

If you would like to support our cause we are also conducting an online fundraising to help the Ecuadorian Victims of the earthquake. If you would like to donate please click on the link below.

Houston’s Job Market Makes This City an Economic Miracle

Written by: Story Studio


For those looking at making a big move, there’s one factor to consider that may just outrank all others: the job market. And when it comes to the job market, there’s no better city than Houston, Texas. With a history of low unemployment rates and costs of living, Houston has often been touted as the U.S.’s “economic miracle.” Though the 2015 collapse of the drilling market and drop in the price of oil tested the strength of Houston’s economy, this city is quickly proving that there’s nothing that can get — and more importantly, keep — them down. This can be credited to Houston’s record-level job creation rates, bustling port, and impressive recovery capacity. Houston is also home to three major industries: energy, manufacturing, and healthcare. The city’s energy scene is brought to life by Fortune 500 leaders including Phillips 66 and Kinder Morgan, while the manufacturing industry boasts more jobs after the recession. Houston’s healthcare and medical sector is anchored by the Texas Medical Center, the world’s largest medical complex and the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, recently ranked the second best cancer hospital in the country.

How Symbols and Rituals Can Drive Performance

Written by: Josh Linkner

In the coastal town of Nanaimo, Canada, police are issuing tickets at an astonishing rate. The tickets are not recognizing the wrongdoing of rule breakers, however. Instead, "Positivity Tickets" are being issued to kids caught in the act of doing something good such as wearing a bike helmet, doing their homework, or crossing the street at a light. The symbols become a source of pride, and help kids believe they have the capacity to do positive things in the community. They also forge a positive relationship with law enforcement, tearing down fear-based stereotypes. Since the idea of positivity tickets began in 2002, more than a million have been issued around the world by progressive police departments like the one in Nanaimo.

Symbols and rituals can play an equally important role in our professional lives. One company I interviewed in my research on innovative corporate culture issues a Failure of the Year award. They hold a big banquet and, among other trophies, issue an award for the team that had a great idea that failed upon launch. While most companies punish setbacks, this one celebrates bold creativity. Think about the message this drives deep into the DNA of the company about taking responsible risk and bringing imagination to the surface. This ritual sends a message that it's okay to push the limits, which fosters an innovative workforce.

Another fast-growing company that wanted to encourage more ideas used symbols to reinforce desired behavior. They put four-feet tall glass jars in a highly visible area of their headquarters, and encouraged team members to put a white marble in the jar each time a new idea comes forward. When ideas take root and are implemented, a red marble is added. Today, a dozen large jars filled mostly with white marbles and sporadic specks of red reinforce the notion that developing great ideas usually comes from numerous bad ones. Employees see and feel this insight several times a day as they walk past the marble-filled jars.

What symbols and rituals exist today in your company? Are there any conflicting messages? If you talk about collaboration but reward individual achievement, the symbolic mismatch will undermine your efforts. Conscious or unintentional, symbols and rituals likely already exist. By taking a purposeful approach, they can be used to power optimal performance.

Think about the behaviors you want from yourself and others and then craft rituals and symbols to reinforce them. Once implemented, they can support the heavy lifting of leadership and drive meaningful results.

Kids in Nanaimo view the police as helpful and supportive as Positivity Tickets fuel the children's desire to do the right thing. Borrow this approach, and drive your own company and career to the next level. No fine required.

15 Surprising Things Productive People Do Differently

Written by: Kevin Cruse.

I recently interviewed over 200 ultra-productive people including seven billionaires, 13 Olympians, 20 straight-A students and over 200 successful entrepreneurs. I asked a simple, open-ended question, “What is your number one secret to productivity?” After analyzing all of their responses, I coded their answers into 15 unique ideas.

Secret #1: They focus on minutes, not hours.

Average performers default to hours and half-hour blocks on their calendar. Highly successful people know there are 1,440 minutes in every day and there is nothing more valuable than time. Money can be lost and made again, but time spent can never be reclaimed. As legendary Olympic gymnast Shannon Miller told me, “To this day, I keep a schedule that is almost minute by minute.” You must master your minutes to master your life.

Secret #2: They focus only on one thing.

Ultra productive people know their Most Important Task (MIT) and work on it for one to two hours each morning, without interruptions. Tom Ziglar, CEO of Ziglar Inc., shared, “Invest the first part of your day working on your number one priority that will help build your business.” What task will have the biggest impact on reaching your goal? What accomplishment will get you promoted at work?

Secret #3: They don’t use to-do lists.

Throw away your to-do list; instead schedule everything on your calendar. It turns out only 41% of items on to-do lists are ever actually done. And all those undone items lead to stress and insomnia because of the Zeigarnik effect. Highly productive people put everything on their calendar and then work and live from that calendar. “Use a calendar and schedule your entire day into 15-minute blocks. It sounds like a pain, but this will set you up in the 95th percentile…”, advises the co-founder of The Art of Charm, Jordan Harbinger.

Secret #4: They beat procrastination with time travel.

Your future self can’t be trusted. That’s because we are “time inconsistent.” We buy veggies today because we think we’ll eat healthy salads all week; then we throw out green rotting mush in the future. I bought P90x because I think I’m going to start exercising vigorously and yet the box sits unopened one year later. What can you do now to make sure your future self does the right thing? Anticipate how you will self-sabotage in the future, and come up with a solution to defeat your future self.

Secret #5: They make it home for dinner.

I first learned this from Intel’s Andy Grove, “There is always more to be done, more that should be done, always more than can be done.” Highly successful people know what they value in life. Yes, work, but also what else they value. There is no right answer, but for many, values include: family time, exercise, giving back. They consciously allocate their 1,440 minutes a day to each area they value (i.e., they put it on their calendar) and then they stick to the schedule.

Secret #6: They use a notebook.

Richard Branson has said on more than one occasion that he wouldn’t have been able to build Virgin without a simple notebook, which he takes with him wherever he goes. In one interview, Greek shipping magnate Aristotle Onassis said, “Always carry a notebook. Write everything down…That is a million dollar lesson they don’t teach you in business school!” Ultra-productive people free their mind by writing everything down.

Secret #7: They process email only a few times a day.

Ultra-productive people don’t “check” email throughout the day. They don’t respond to each vibration or ding to see who has intruded their inbox. Instead, like everything else, they schedule time to process their email quickly and efficiently. For some that’s only once a day, for me, it’s morning, noon and night.

Secret #8: They avoid meetings at all costs.

When I asked Mark Cuban to give me his best productivity advice, he quickly responded, “Never take meetings unless someone is writing a check.” Meetings are notorious time killers. They start late, have the wrong people in them, meander in their topics and run long. You should get out of meetings whenever you can, hold fewer of them yourself, and if you do run a meeting, keep it short.

Secret #9: They say “no” to almost everything.

Billionaire Warren Buffet once said, “The difference between successful people and very successful people is that very successful people say ‘no’ to almost everything.” And James Altucher colorfully gave me this tip, “If something is not a “hell, YEAH! Then it’s a “no!”

Remember, you only have 1,440 minutes in every day. Don’t give them away easily.

Secret #10: They follow the 80/20 rule.

Known as the Pareto Principle, in most cases 80% of outcomes come from only 20% of activities. Ultra-productive people know which activities drive the greatest results, and focus on those and ignore the rest.

Secret #11: They delegate almost everything.

Ultra-productive people don’t ask, “How can I do this task?” Instead they ask, “How can this task get done?” They take the “I” out of it as much as possible. Ultra-productive people don’t have control issues and they are not micro-managers. In many cases good enough is, well, good enough.

Secret #12: They theme days of the week.

Highly successful people often theme days of the week to focus on major areas. For decades I’ve used “Mondays for Meetings” and make sure I’m doing one-on-one check-ins with each direct report. My Friday afternoons are themed around financials and general administrative items that I want to clean up before the new week starts. I’ve previously written about Jack Dorsey’s work themes, which enable him to run two companies at once. Batch your work to maximize your efficiency and effectiveness.

Secret #13: They touch things only once.

How many times have you opened a piece of regular mail—a bill perhaps—and then put it down only to deal with it again later? How often do you read an email, and then close it and leave it in your inbox to deal with later? Highly successful people try to “touch it once.” If it takes less than five or ten minutes—whatever it is—they’ll deal with it right then and there. It reduces stress since it won’t be in the back of their mind, and is more efficient since they won’t have to re-read or evaluate the item again in the future.

Secret #14: They practice a consistent morning routine.

My single greatest surprise while interviewing over 200 highly successful people was how many of them wanted to share their morning ritual with me. Hal Elrod, author of The Miracle Morning, told me, “While most people focus on ‘doing’ more to achieve more, The Miracle Morning is about focusing on ‘becoming’ more so that you can start doing less, to achieve more.” While I heard about a wide variety of habits, most people I interviewed nurtured their body in the morning with water, a healthy breakfast and light exercise. They nurtured their mind with meditation or prayer, inspirational reading, and journaling.

Secret #15: Energy is everything.

You can’t make more minutes in the day, but you can increase your energy which will increase your attention, focus, decision making, and overall productivity. Highly successful people don’t skip meals, sleep or breaks in the pursuit of more, more, more. Instead, they view food as fuel, sleep as recovery, and pulse and pause with “work sprints.”

Tying It All Together

You might not be an entrepreneur, Olympian, or millionaire—or even want to be—but their secrets just might help you to get more done in less time, and help you to stop feeling so overworked and overwhelmed.

11 Surefire Ways For Women To Get Power And Make A Ton Of Money

Written by: Denisse Restaury


Cindy Gallop’s Twitter profile says it all, “I like to blow sh*t up. I am the Michael Bay of business.” And this quote from Gallop is one of my favorites: “You’ll never own the future if you care what other people think.”

How did Gallop get the confidence to say what she thinks? To ask for what she wants? That’s what I asked her when she joined me on my Mentoring Moments podcast. Here are 11 takeaways, surefire ways for women to get power and make as much money as humanly possible (all in Gallop’s words, edited and condensed).

1. I urge women not to look for just mentors, but even more importantly to find champions. There can be a tendency for the word mentor to sound very advisory, a lot of talking. I am a naturally action-oriented person who feels there is far too much talking in the world and too little doing. So I urge women to find champions because champions are people who make sh*t happen for you.

2. Never give anything away for free. What you have to offer any workplace (or any person) is your personal point of view, your hard-won lessons through experience. If I responded to every request I get to pick my brain for free, I would have no time to support myself and I’d be personally bankrupt.

3.Be totally unashamed about wanting to make a sh*t ton of money. Women are not brought up to think about money the way men are. To be taken seriously, women need to make as much money as humanly possible. Negotiate and argue for money, like all the men around you are doing. There’s a bigger point here. When C-suite men (and women) look at the spread sheet with all the company’s salaries, when they see that women earn less than men, in their minds they think, “Women are not as good as men.”

4. One of the quickest ways for women to make money is to invest. So please women, make as much money as you can and fund other women because that’s how we will all become billionaires. There was a whole bro network (white guys talking to white guys) who got tipped-off early on to things like Uber. That network doesn’t operate for women. Women, consciously get your ear to the ground and invest.

5. Do not let anybody tell you what to do with your own f*cking money. I’ve seen this happen (friends have similar experiences): A woman who has the money to invest, tells her husband/partner that she is going to invest in MakeLoveNotPorn and he responds: “Oh no darling you don’t want to do that” and the woman capitulates.

6. Social sharing can make sh*t happen for women. Social media is a whole new methodology to do what women have been doing since the beginning of time – sharing the sh*t out of everything. We make sh*t happen when we share.

7. If you are working at a place that does not welcome and celebrate your talent, somewhere that does not allow you to disrupt and innovate in the way that you want to, get the f*ck out, get another job. There’s no point in being there.

8. Manage your own mind. Mind management tip: of all the things that stress you out every day, pick one thing and address only that one stress that day.

9. There is always a way over, around, under or through every obstacle. You just need to be creative about what that is. Take micro-actions.

10. The fear of what other people will think is the single most paralyzing dynamic in business and life. You will never own the future if you care what other people think.

11. The only person who can make things happen for you is you. People can help you (i.e., champions), but you need to make it happen.

The Most Common Practices Of Super-Achievers

Written by: Tanya Prive

How Super-Achievers Do What They Do

For their new book The Art of Doing, Camille Sweeney and Josh Gosfield interviewed 36 super-achievers at the tops of their fields. They started seeing patterns emerge. These are the 10 most common practices of the highly successful.

1.Practicing Patience

Co-authors Sweeney and Gosfield heard again and again the importance of patience–whether it’s strategically waiting for the best time to take action or continuing to pursue a larger vision without receiving immediate rewards. Jill Tarter, director of SETI research, has been searching for life on other planets for the last 50 years without any guarantee of success.

2. Managing Emotions

Super-achievers know how to manage their own emotions and those of the people around them. Gary Noesner, former FBI hostage negotiator, would listen and find out what the person’s needs were in order to gain their trust and diffuse the intense emotions.

3. Constantly Evolving

Successful people maintain success by consistently learning and adapting to the environment around them. Tennis champion Martina Navratilova realized this when her game suddenly started sliding. She decided to transform her training routine and diet, and soon was back on track to become an all-star athlete.

4. Fostering A Community

Success cannot be achieved alone. Achievers galvanize a group of people around their idea or goal. Jessica Watson, who sailed around the world at age 16, sought the help of mentors, experts and friends to support and prepare her for the journey.

5. Testing Ideas In The Market

“Everybody has a bias to think their own idea is brilliant,” says co-author Gosfield. “[Achievers] roll it out in an environment that’s as close as possible to the market.” Bill Gross, the head of Idealab and a mega-successful entrepreneur, always tests his business ideas first to better understand consumer interest before he launches them.

6. Intelligent Persistence

Super-achievers are intelligently persistent—meaning they know when to pivot. When faced with setbacks, instead of doggedly using the same tactics that aren’t working, they examine the problem and figure out what will work. Opera superstar Anna Netrebko was initially discouraged from being a solo singer. However, she took a job as an opera-house janitor, got the chance to audition and eventually got a shot at the lead role.

7. Pursuing Happiness

Success fuels happiness, and happiness in turn fuels greater success. Game show champion Ken Jennings said his passion for the game helped him win, and every win gave him more confidence for the next round.

8. Listening And Remaining Open

Successful people practice the art of listening to learn what they need to know about the world around them. They may listen in the tradition sense, but it’s also about being open more generally. Actress Laura Linney does this with every script. She never takes a part unless she has read and reread the script so many times that it has opened up to her.

9. Dedication To A Vision

Super-achievers are dedicated to their vision day in and day out. Philippe Petit, famous for his high-wire walk between New York City’s Twin Towers, dedicated himself to the feat before he was even an accomplished wire-walker. He stuck with it until he’d accomplished his goal.

10. Good Storytelling

Stories have the ability to transport people to your world, so they’re more likely to invest in you and your brand. Instead of million-dollar ads, CEO Tony Hsieh wanted each customer interaction to sell the brand. With positive word of mouth, every customer was telling the story of the company.

The Science of Sounding Smart

Writen by: Juliana Schroeder and Nicholas Epley.  
  • Source: Harvard Business Review

    When you’re trying to convey the quality of your mind to your boss, or to a company that’s considering you for a job, your best ally may be your own voice.

    Although some people may assume that their ideas and intellect would come across much better in written form, it turns out that using your voice can make you sound smarter.

    This insight comes out of our broader research investigating how people discern what’s going on in others’ minds despite the fundamental human inability to directly observe another’s thoughts, beliefs, or motivations. We’ve learned that spoken language is a highly effective tool for this. It’s the communication form that most clearly reveals not only what people are thinking but also their thinking ability.

    That’s an insight worth pondering. After all, a significant part of your success in life depends on how you are evaluated by others. You may be smart and competent, but if your boss fails to realize it, you will not get your well-deserved raise. You may be the best candidate for an intellectually demanding job, but you won’t get hired unless your interviewer recognizes your ability.

    We discovered this through a series of experiments. One of them consisted of asking each of 18 MBA students in the middle of recruiting season to prepare a spoken pitch to their preferred employers explaining why they should be hired. (We also asked them to prepare a separate written pitch, which we used for a subsequent experiment.) We gave them as much time as they wanted to make their pitches as compelling as possible, and we videotaped the presentations so that we could evaluate the effect of both hearing and seeing the candidates.

    We then asked 162 evaluators to watch one video, listen to one audio pitch, or read a transcript (with filler words like “um” removed). The evaluators assessed the candidates’ competence, thoughtfulness, and intelligence and reported how much they liked them and how positive an impression they had made. Judgments like these are of fundamental importance for hiring decisions in sectors such as service, in which employers are searching for intelligent employees. Finally, the evaluators reported on how interested they would be in hiring the candidates if they were considering them for positions.

    In comparison with those who read the transcripts, the evaluators who heard pitches judged the candidates to have greater intellect (to be more rational, thoughtful, and intelligent), on average. They also liked the individuals more, had a more positive overall impression, and — perhaps most important — were more interested in hiring the candidates. Evaluators who saw the videos appeared to be even more favorably impressed, but there was no statistically significant difference between the evaluations of video and audio.

    Find this and other HBR graphics in our VISUAL LIBRARY 

    Results like these may come as a surprise to many people. When we asked samples of MBA students, master’s degree students, local (Chicago) community members, and online participants to predict whether their intelligence would be judged more positively in speech or text, they expected no meaningful difference between the two. Faced with the question of how best to convey their intellect to a recruiter, providing a short typed pitch or an audio of the same words, roughly half (50 out of 112) of the MBA students we surveyed said they would prefer to provide a written pitch.

    Granted, a transcription of a spoken pitch might make for a less-than-compelling text, so we conducted another experiment to test whether the results of a written pitch would be similar to those of a transcript. This experiment confirmed that a person’s mind is indeed conveyed through the voice: In comparison with either a transcript or a student’s carefully written pitch, a spoken pitch led to more positive impressions of candidates’ intellect and more hiring interest.

    You might wonder whether people who actually hire candidates for a living would show the same preference for candidates who speak. For ethical reasons, we could not manipulate real hiring decisions, but we could conduct our experiments with professional recruiters. After a conference, we asked 39 recruiters from companies such as Microsoft and Goldman Sachs either to listen to a candidate’s pitch or to read a transcript. On average, they too judged a candidate to be more intelligent, likable, and employable if they heard, rather than read, a pitch.

    Obviously there are many situations in which providing written text is the only option for communicating with superiors or recruiters. But it’s worth making the effort to bring your voice into the mix, and we believe it’s a good idea, when people are about to make decisions about you, to look for opportunities to chat on the phone or in person.

    Although there may be some advantages to putting thoughts in writing — it allows for revisions, for example — written passages lack critical paralinguistic cues that provide critical information about a speaker’s intelligence and thoughtfulness. Your voice is a tool that has been honed over the course of human evolution to communicate what’s on your mind to others. Without even thinking about it, you naturally flood your listener with cues to your thinking through subtle modulations in tone, pace, volume, and pitch. The listener, attuned to those modulations, naturally decodes these cues. That’s why if you claim to be passionate about your prospective job, for example, hearing your passion may be more convincing than reading your passion. Written text may not convey the same impression as your voice, because it lacks a critical feature: the sound of intellect.