Video of Obama’s 2015 State of the Union – analysis

 In Learning from Luminaries, Politicians

If you’re a business pitch client of mine or a 1:1 executive coaching client of mine or a participant in my Leadership, Listen and speak under pressure, or Delivering memorable messages programmes – my homework assignment for you in the next seven days is to watch Barack Obama’s recent State of the Union address.

(Even if you’re not a client/participant I urge you to watch the address). Here is the link to the address: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UPFT4xlNE5g

In particular pay attention to the following aspects of the presentation.

– Obama’s consummate ownership of the presentation from start to finish. The ownership of time. Pitch-perfect pauses. Never giving the impression of rushing. So in tune with the moment, connected with himself, his message and the audience.

– His ability to shift between a light and serious tone.

– How, near the latter half of the presentation, after praising the US military, he ‘drove home’ his respect for the military through repeatedly nodding, as the audience continued applauding.

– How quickly the presentation passed in time, despite it being 60 minutes.

Your Call to action/How to apply for this post: After watching the presentation consider what changes you could make to your presentation delivery. Choose one way and work on that change for the next 29 days.


p.s. I’ll be presenting a Speaking with Impact presentation at the second ACS (Australian Computer Society) Future Leaders Institute later this month. Here’s the link to the event:   Speakers at the Institute include: Terry Davis, former MD of CCA, Gail Pemberton, and Dr Stefan Hajkowicz of CSIRO Futures.

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