“My voice is loud enough!”
“I don’t need a microphone!”
“I know you can hear me.”
“Can you hear me? Good!”
When you’re speaking to a group, have you used those phrases an excuse for not using the microphone? If you have, then you’ve left people out.
Forty-eight million Americans experience hearing loss every day. Even people with “good” hearing sometimes struggle to hear in large or acoustically challenging spaces–or even smaller meetings or events. But many of these folks are too shy or embarrassed to speak up and ask you to use a microphone (or other assistive listening technology.)
So when you set the mic down, you leave people out. Pick it up and use it, and you help many people, slowing down the conversation so it’s easier to follow. A mic helps facilitate your meeting. And a microphone is the key to all assistive listening technology, like hearing loops and remote CART.
How can you learn to like the mic? Start by watching this fun, informative video by our wise, talented friends at Rooted in Rights and Disability Rights Washington. Learn to use the mic properly and your confidence will rise–and more people will will benefit.
The mic isn’t scary, we promise. But it is a solid first step to create inclusive, hearing-friendly events and meetings.