Collection agencies seek soft, female voices

The type of voice giving bad news affects whether debtors pay up

When the debt collection comes calling, do you pick up the phone? That depends on the type of voice, according to The Wall Street Journal. When you’re telling people to pay their bills, a soft, female voice should leave the first message, followed by a stern male, who speaks in short, declarative sentences that are aimed at “creating a sense of urgency.” Sweet talk, then hard knocks is an effective formula, say debt-collection executives. English accents for debt collection are also a hit because men tend to think “Elizabeth Hurley is on the other end,” says an industry insider. Unfortunately, the medium isn’t the message.

The Wall Street Journal