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The onwards and upwards speech. The Best is yet to come
Company leaders and Sales directors have begun to think
about, and prepare their speeches for the forthcoming Christmas meetings/conferences
or their January’s New Year’s kick off
Should they be looking for inspiration they could well benefit from taking a look for
ideas on structure and adapt some of the content of President Obamaelectionacceptance speech in Chicago November2012 .
The objectives for his speech have parallels for such end of
year and kick events in the commercial world where a leader reviews of the past
, thanks the team thank their endeavours and inspires them to work even harder for the next year!
Look at Obama’s use of rhetoric by grouping points and
illustrations in rhythmic groups of three, his use of alliteration and peppering
the speech with stories, anecdotes, illustrations, examples, facts and figures
I have coloured up the speech with highlights and remarks to
help you see its great construction and use of public speaking techniques of
Just substitute ‘country’ with ‘company’, ‘voter’s, ‘party
workers’ with ‘customers’, ‘sales team’ and ‘support members’ and you will
quickly see how to adapt this great speech structure to the commercial field.
Why not also listen to the BBC Video Clip of speech on you tube clip to hear
how President Obama uses his voice with changes in volume, variety of pitch,
openness and optimism, with impactful words and interesting examples,
clearand confident delivery plus his
subtle use of emphasis and pauses but
above all enthusiasm after what must have been months of gruelling political
Put your personal politics aside and study the consummate
art of 21st century rhetoric - it has much to teach us.
/ Historical Contextual Opening)
Tonight, more than 200 years(facts and figures) after a former colony won the right
to determine its own destiny, the task of perfectingour unionmoves forward❶. ( Central theme of this kind of speech MOVING
( Inspire words e.g. ‘spirit’ the range offrom low and to the highest figures and
It moves forward❷because of you. It moves forward❸because you reaffirmed the spirit that has triumphed
over war and depression, the
spirit that has lifted this country from the depths of despair
to the great heights of hope, the belief that while each
of us will pursue our own individual dreams, we are an American family❶and we rise or fall
together as one nation❷and as one people❸.
( Use of ‘You
‘ appeal e.g. You, the American People,
corporate ‘we’ and ‘our.)
journey expanded experience of journey)
Tonight, in this election, you, the American people,
reminded us that while our road has been hard, while our journey
has been long, we have picked
ourselves up❶ , we have fought our way back❷, and we know in our hearts❸
that for the United States of America the best is yet to come.
( The’ by the
way’ – of the moment relevance- makes the speech have some apparent
I want to thank every American who participated❶
in this election, whether you
voted for the very first time❷
or waited in line for a
very long time❸. By the way, we have to
fix that!(humour). Whether you pounded the pavement❶
or picked up the phone❷, whether you held an Obama sign or a Romney sign❸, you made your voice heard
and you made a difference.
( Sportsmanship / humility/ acknowledge opponent)
I just spoke with Gov. Romney (story of the moment) and I congratulated him and Paul Ryan on a
hard-fought campaign. We may have battled fiercely, but it’s only because we
love this country deeply and we care so strongly about its future. From George to Lenore
to their son Mitt, the Romney family has chosen to give back to America through
public service and that is the legacy that we honor and applaud tonight. In the
weeks ahead, I also look forward to sitting down with Gov. Romney to talk about
where we can work together to move this country forward.
colleagues, team leaders)
I want to thank my friend and partner of the last four
years, America’s happy warrior, the best vice president anybody could ever hope
for, Joe Biden.
spouse/ family / supportPA)
And I wouldn’t be the man I am today without the woman who
agreed to marry me 20 years ago. Let me say this publicly: Michelle, I have
never loved you more. I have never been prouder to watch the rest of America
fall in love with you, too, as our nation’s first lady. Sasha and Malia, before
our very eyes you’re growing up to become two strong, smart beautiful young
women, just like your mom. And I’m so proud of you guys. But I will say that
for now one dog’s probably enough (humour) .
( Thank the
team new members and old hands))
To the best❶campaign team and volunteers in the history of politics. The best❷. The best ever❸. Some of you were new this time
around, and some of you have been at my side since the very beginning. But all
of you are family. No matter what you do or where you go from here, you will
carry the memory of the history we made together and you will have the lifelong
appreciation of a grateful president.
/Values / Biblical/ Famous quote resonance)
Thank you forbelievingall the way, through every hill,
through every valley. You lifted me upthe whole way and I will always
be grateful for everything that you’ve done and all the incredible work that
you put in
( reflection on the business [Politics]pin prick the cynics acknowledge the work by
I know that political campaigns can sometimes seem small,
even silly. And that provides plenty of fodder for the cynics that tell
us that politics is nothing more than a contest of egos or the domain
of special interests.
(Illustrate point with picture words/examples)
But if you ever get
the chance to talk to folks who turned out at our rallies and crowded along a rope line e.g.1in a high school gym e.g.2,
or saw folks working late in a campaign office e.g. 3in
some tiny county far away from home, you’ll discover something else.
You’ll hear the determination in the voice of a young field organizer who’s e.g.1working his way through
college and wants to make sure every child has that same opportunity. You’ll
hear the pride in the voice of a volunteer who’s e.g.2going
door to door because her brother was finally hired when the local auto plant
added another shift. ( Military away and when they return) You’ll hear the deep patriotism in the voice of a military spouse e.g.3who’s working the phones
late at night to make sure that no one who fights for this country ever
has to fight for a job or a roof over their head when they come home.
That’s why❶we do this. That’s what❷politics can be. That’s why❸elections matter. It’s
( The reality
of the experience VUCA – a volatile,
uncertain, complex and Ambiguous world)
Democracy in a nation
of 300 million can be noisy and messy and complicated. We have our own
opinions. Each of us has deeply held beliefs. And when we go through tough
times, when we make big decisions as a country, it necessarily stirs passions,
stirs up controversy.
That won’t change after tonight,
and it shouldn’t. These arguments we have are a mark of our liberty.
( Those less
fortunate than ourselves or away from the country)
We can never forget
that as we speak people in distant nations are risking their lives right now
just for a chance to argue about the issues that matter, the chance to cast
their ballots like we did today.
But despite all our differences, most of us share certain
hopes forAmerica①’s future. We want our
kids to grow up in a country②where they have access to the best schools and the best
teachers. A country③ that lives up to its legacy as the
global leader in technology①and discovery②and innovation③,with all the good jobs and new businesses that follow.
We want our children to live in an America thatisn’t burdened① by debt, thatisn’t weakened② by inequality, that isn’tthreatened③ by the destructive power of a warming planet. We
want to pass on a country that’ssafe①and
respected② and admired③ around the world, a nation that is defended by the
strongest military on earth and the best troops this — this world has ever
known. But also a country that moves with confidence beyond this time of war,
to shape a peace that is built on the promise of freedom and dignity for every
(Aspiration and Destination echoes of Martin Luther King “I have a
dream…”Past history and pedigree and
future through teamwork – common bond)
We believe in a generous① America, in a compassionate② America, in atolerant③America,
open to the dreams of
an immigrant’s daughter whostudies in our schools and pledges to our flag.
To the young boy on the south side of Chicago who sees a life beyond the
nearest street corner. To the furniture worker’s child in North Carolina
who wants to becomea doctor or a scientist①, an engineer or an entrepreneur②, a diplomat or
even a president③— that’s
the futurewe hope for. That’s the vision we share. That’swhere we need to go— forward.
That’s where we need to go.
Now, we will disagree, sometimes fiercely, about how to get there. As it has for more than two
centuries, progress will come in fits and starts. It’s not always a straight
line. It’s not always a smooth path. By itself, the recognition that we have
common hopes and dreams won’t end all the gridlock or solve all our problems or
substitute for the painstaking work of building consensus and making the
difficult compromises needed to move this country forward. But that common bond
is where we must begin.
(Green Shootsand hope I…, I…,You..
Our economy is rrecovering①. A decade
of war is ending②. A long campaign is now over③. And
whether I earned your vote or not, I have listened to you, I have
learned from you, and you’ve made me a better president. And with
your stories and your struggles, I return to the White House more determined
and more inspired than ever about the work there is to do and the future that
Challenges /Actions c. 3-5No
Tonight you voted for action, not politics as usual. You
elected us to focus on your jobs, not ours. And in the coming weeks and
months, I am looking forward to reaching out and working with leaders of both
parties to meet the challenges we can only solve together. Reducing our deficit❶.
Reforming our tax code❷. Fixing our immigration system❸. Freeing ourselves from
We’ve got more work to do.
( It doesn’t end here, elude to JFK “ ask not what country can do for
you but you can do for your country”))
But that doesn’t mean your work is done. The role of citizen
in our democracy does not end with your vote. America’s never been about what
can be done for us. It’s about what can be done by us together through the hard❶andfrustrating❷, but necessary❸ work of self-government. That’s the principle we were founded on.
This country has more wealth than any nation, but that’s not what❶makes us rich.
We have the most
powerful military in history, but that’s not what❷makes us strong
. Our university, our culture are all the envy of the world,
but that’s not what❸keeps the world coming to our shores.
( What really makes the country great - freedom and rights)
What makes America exceptional are the bonds that hold
together the most diverse nation on earth. The belief that our
destiny is shared; that this country only works when we accept certain
obligations to one another and to future generations. The freedom which so many Americans have fought for
and died for come with responsibilities as well as
rights. And among those are love and charity and duty
and patriotism. That’s what makes America great.
I am hopeful tonight because I’ve seen
the spirit at work in America. I’ve seen it❶in the family business whose owners would rather cut their
own pay than lay off their neighbors, and in the workers who would rather cut
back their hours than see a friend lose a job. I’ve seen it❷in the soldiers who
reenlist after losing a limb and in those SEALs who charged up the stairs into
darkness and danger because they knew there was a buddy behind them watching
I’ve seen it❸t on the shores of New Jersey example and New York examples, where leaders from every party and level of
government have swept aside their differences to help a community rebuild from
the wreckage of a terrible storm. And I saw just the other day, in Mentor example, Ohio examples, where a father told
the story of his 8-year-old daughter, whose long battle with leukemia nearly
cost their family everything had it not been for health care reform passing
just a few months before the insurance company was about to stop paying for her
I had an opportunity to not just talk to the father, but
meet this incredible daughter of his. And when he spoke to the crowd listening
to that father’s story, every parent in that room had tears in their eyes,
because we knew that little girl could be our own. And I know that every
American wants her future to be just as bright. That’s who we are. That’s the
country I’m so proud to lead as your president.
And tonight, despite all the hardship we’ve been through,
despite all the frustrations of Washington, I’ve never been more hopeful❶ about our future. I have never been more hopeful❷about America. And I ask
you to sustain that hope❸.I’m not
talking about blind optimism, the kind of hope that just ignores the
enormity of the tasks ahead or the roadblocks that stand in our path. I’m not talkingabout the wishful idealism that
allows us to just sit on the sidelines or shirk from a fight.
(Share Your beliefs, and vision)
I have always believed that hope
is that stubborn thing inside us that insists, despite all the evidence to the
contrary, that something better awaits us so long as we have the courage to
keep reaching, to keep working, to keep fighting.
America, I believewe can build on the
progress we’ve made and continue to fight for new jobs and new opportunity and
new security for the middle class.
can keep the promise of our founders, the idea that if you’re willing to work
hard, it doesn’t matter who you are or where you come from or what you look
like or where you love. It doesn’t matter whether you’re black or white or
Hispanic or Asian or Native American or young or old or rich or poor, able,
disabled, gay or straight, you can make it here in America if you’re willing to
(Appeal Close As it was , is now and
ever shall be)
I believe we can seize this
future together because we are not as
divided as our politics suggests. We’re not as
cynical as the pundits believe. We are greater❶than the sum of our individual ambitions, and we remain❷more
than a collection of red states and blue states. We are and forever
United States of America.
And together with your help and
God’s grace we will continue our journey
forward and remind the world just why it is that we live in the greatest nation
Thank you, America. God bless you. God bless these United