Tell me what your voice is like and I’ll tell you what your personality is like

The results revealed that a lower tone of voice is associated with individuals who are more dominant, extroverted and with greater ‘socio-sexuality’ (more interested in casual sex). The findings were consistent in both men and women. However, the relationship between tone of voice and other personality traits such as kindness, neuroticism, directness, or conscientiousness seems less clear, and it is most likely that such traits cannot be inferred from tone of voice. voice.

To reach these conclusions, the researchers analyzed data from more than 2,000 volunteers from four different countries. Participants completed questionnaires about themselves to measure personality and provided recordings of their voice so that pitch could be measured using a computer program. This is the first time that an objective digital measure of tone of voice has been used in such a study, rather than subjective ratings.

To measure the ‘socio-sexuality’ factor, the researchers collected responses about the behavior, attitude and sexual desire of the interviewees. In the same way, different data were collected to quantify mastery and other character traits such as neuroticism, extraversion, openness to experience, kindness and conscientiousness.

Subjective impressions?

“Voices can make an intense and immediate impression on us,” explains Julia Stern of the Group for Biological Personality Psychology at the University of Göttingen. “Even if we only hear someone’s voice without any visual clue, for example on the phone, at once we know if we are talking to a woman or a man, a child or an elderly person. We can know if our interlocutor is friendly, has an attractive voice, is sad or nervous, we can even make assumptions about whether that person is trustworthy or dominant ”. Are all these assumptions justified? “The first step was to investigate whether voices are, in fact, related to personality.. And our results suggest that people seem to express some aspects of their character with their voice, “explains the scientist.

This study was conducted as a ‘registered report’, meaning that it benefited from peer review by other researchers at a very early stage and was accepted for publication regardless of the results. It is one of the new quality indicators that are being developed to make science more transparent and reliable.

Reference: Stern J et al, “Do voices carry valid information about a speaker’s personality?” Journal of Research in Personality. Doi: 10.1016 / j.jrp.2021.104092

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