Speechwriting is an art. But it
is also a disciplined exercise in psychology.
In writing hundreds speeches,
pep talks, and seminar presentations for corporate executives
I learned that the most effective speech is one that begins
with an understanding of the audience:
What do they need to hear?
Why do they need to hear it?
What do I want the listeners to
do when the speech is over?
But understanding the audience
is only the beginning. The speechwriter must understand the
speaker as well. Because a well written speech is one that the
speaker would have written himself if he had the time to do
It carries the messages the
speaker wants to deliver.
It builds logically to the
It contains expressions, phrases
and grammatical construction that is consistent with the
speaker's everyday conversation.
It contains a clear call to
action--even if the action is only to consider the speaker's
point of view.
speeches make speakers look good:
A good speech should elicit the
kind of comment I overheard following the delivery by a CEO of
the first major employee address I had written for him. "Wow,
that's the best speech Lee has ever given," said a manager to
one of his front-line supervisors. "...for the first time he
was really telling it like it is."
The CEO was one of the most open
and forthright individuals I knew, but previous speech-writers
wrote speeches as if they were the ones who would be giving
them, or filled the speeches with facts and figures that put people to
sleep, or wrote speeches in a style better suited for
a 19th century politician.
If you have an important speech
to give and you're looking for someone to make it dynamic and
make it yours, give me a call.
You can also reach me via email: