Unformatted text preview: e same way,
ensuring that your voice is soft, rounded and undulates smoothly to re¯ect your
own feelings of compassion.
By drawing on your feelings and emotions to ®ne-tune the way you use your voice,
you will be much better able to connect emotionally with customers and become
someone they really like. Freemantle in this passage is clearly describing a form of `emotional labour',
involving the management of both the customer's feelings and the worker's
own. (The section from which I take the quotation is titled `The Emotional
Voice'.) The point has often been made that emotion in general is discursively
constructed (certainly in anglophone cultures) as a `feminine' domain (Lutz
1990); both `emotional expressiveness' and `caring' are salient symbolic meanings of `women's language'. If, as I have suggested, these are also key values in
new regimes of customer care, that provides a rationale for making a `feminine'
or feminized linguistic style the norm in service contexts.
It should not be overlooked, though, that emotional labour, and indeed
service work in general, is not performed only by women. Women still represent
the majority of rank-and-®le employees in many service workplaces (including
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- Spring '08
- The Land, Call centre, Blackwell Publishers Ltd.