Study Shows Low Pitched Voices Preferred by Voters
Those that are taller and are more attractive fair a better chance. Being rich and successful is a given.
Up until very recently, every candidate we saw was both male and Caucasian, but even President Obama and female candidates Sarah Palin, Hillary Clinton, and this years Michelle Bachman, seem to have some core similarities.
Why do our leaders share so much in common?
Perhaps, as evolutionary psychologists suggest,
...leaders are not just made- theyre born.
In a study released this week from McMaster University, researchers explored just one facet of our presidential preferences and apparently thats a low pitched voice!
In their research, they had 125 participants listen to 3 different versions of a past presidents voice recording - one that had been modified to be at a higher-pitch, one that was modified to be lower and one that was unaltered. Based on the voice alone, participants rated the speakers looks, leadership abilities, honesty, intelligence and dominance and then finally, were asked which of the three recording versions they would elect as president.
In every recording, the lower-pitched version got the majority vote.
Cara Tigue, one of the authors on this study, explains the evolutionary benefit of this voice bias.
"Throughout our evolutionary history, it would have been important for our ancestors to pay attention to cues to good leadership, because group leaders affected a person's ability to survive and reproduce within a groupWe're looking at it in a present-day, 21st-Century context."
What your voice is saying....
Our voice, you see, is an indicator of both our intelligence and of our hormone levels!
In fact, a womans voice changes slightly throughout her hormonal cycle - peaking to its highest pitch at ovulation when she is most fertile which explains why men subconsciously find higher-pitched voices more attractive.
A low-pitched voice on the other hand, is a signal of male health and fertility, explaining why, especially around ovulation or when seeking a short-term relationship, women tend to favor men with deep voices.
This also explains why confidence, leadership ability and dominance traits most closely associated with masculinity are most strongly associated with lower-pitched voices.
(Yes, even in female candidates.)
And its not just the vocal pitch offering clues the pace and inflection of a voice send a message as well. For example, we judge fast talkers to be more intelligent than those with a slow drawl and a good amount of variance in inflection suggests the speaker is passionate and interesting.
Clearly, a good voice can be a huge benefit for its owner!
In fact, says David Feinberg, not only can we be attracted by a voice, In general, people with attractive voices have attractive faces," but then, maybe thats all a mind trick as well!
According to another voice study, if a candidates voice does outshine his or her face,, they can still trick us into thinking they are more attractive than we normally would they just need to keep talking!
SOURCES: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-15718969, http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/the-womens-blog-with-jane-martinson/2011/nov/15/woman-lower-tone-voice-successful?newsfeed=true, http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/howaboutthat/8888727/Deep-voices-show-leadership.html, http://www.psychologytoday.com/articles/200712/fast-forces-attraction
PHOTO CREDIT: Maasive