Friday, June 25, 2010

Analysis of Julia Gillard's First Speech As Prime Minister


How did Julia Gillard (pictured - source mirror.com.uk) go in her first speech as prime minister after Kevin Rudd was forced to step aside?

Well, pretty impressive. Most of us have a fear of public speaking and public speaking doesn't come easily.

What are the public speaking tips, public speaking training, and public speaking ideas we can learn from with Julia Gillard's First speech as Prime Minister.

This is a case study on how to give a speech because you may not be able to go to any public speaking training Perth based courses of mine.

She has some solid speechwriters and advisers behind her.

At some time in your career you may have to make a speech when you take over a new role.

This could be to staff when you get a new job, it could be to a committee if you get elected to a new role for a not for profit or it could be to shareholders as a new Chairman or CEO.

We can all learn from others. So I wanted to analyse this speech not from a political perspective but from a methodology and content point of view.

Here is my analysis.

1. Hair and Make Up

Ok, if you are Kevin Rudd this is pretty simple. But for women it is more complex because women are judged by their appearance more by both men and women.

She has obviously employed a great stylist who has worked wonders.

If you look at archival photos and footage hair has always been an issue for the redhead. Her style works and has just been done for the big moment. She realises this is an important part of the image and package.

2. Wardrobe

Conservative, powerful and understated. This wins many votes as her wardrobe gives her personal power but doesn't detract from her message. Again, you can see the value in having a good stylist. The dark suit works well. The jewellery is subtle and classy. With the gold and metal theme there is a subtle message of support and empathy with the mining industry.

3. Opening

Sensational opening - really worked some magic in terms of language and the understated sense of history and occasion.

Humble and authentic in the words. Folksy, passionate and down to earth in the delivery style. Good match of content with context.

"Thank you for joining me in this jam packed room and can I say Australians one and all, it's with the greatest humility, resolve and enthusiasm that I sought the endorsement of my colleagues to be the Labor leader and to be the Prime Minister of this country. I have accepted that endorsement. I am truly honoured to lead this country which I love."

4. The Power of the Personal Story

The reflection back to South Australia and values was really impressive.

"I'm utterly committed to the service of our people. I grew up in the great state of South Australia. I grew up in a home of hardworking parents. They taught me the value of hard work. They taught me the value of respect. They taught me the value of doing your bit for the community and it is these values that will guide me as Australia's Prime Minister. I believe in a government that rewards those who work the hardest, not those who complain the loudest. I believe in a government that rewards those that day in, day out, work in our factories and on our farms, in our mines and in our mills, in our classrooms and in our hospitals, that rewards that hard work, decency and effort. The people that play by the rules, set their alarms early, get their kids off to school, stand by their neighbours and love their country."

5. The Key Theme - Leadership

Simple, compelling theme about leadership.

"I also believe that leadership is about the authority that grows from mutual respect shared by colleagues, from teamwork and from hard work, team work and spirit.

It is these beliefs that have been my compass during the 3.5 years of the most loyal service I could offer to my colleague, Kevin Rudd. I asked my colleagues to make a leadership change because I believed that a good government was losing its way. And because I believed, fundamentally, that the basic education and health services that Australians rely on and their decent treatment at work is at risk at the next election."

6. The Second Key Point - Taking Action

The second theme in the speech is about taking action. Also passion comes through.

"I love this country and I was not going to sit idly by and watch an incoming opposition cut education, cut health and smash rights at work. My values and my beliefs have driven me to step forward to take this position as Prime Minister. Today I want to make some commitments to the Australian people. I want to make firstly a commitment that I will lead a strong and responsible government that will take control of our future. A strong and responsible government improving and protecting the essential public services and basic rights our people depend on, including so importantly, their rights at work."

7. The Third Key Point - Acknowledgement

When taking over a new role - new management role, new leadership role, always acknowledge others. Even those you are competing against. All class in this area.

"I wish to make two acknowledgments. I take my full share of responsibility for the Rudd Government's record, for our important achievements, and for the errors made. I also certainly acknowledge I have not been elected Prime Minister by the Australian people. And in the coming months, I will ask the Governor General to call a general election so that the Australian people can exercise their birth right and choose their prime minister. Between now and this election, I seek their consideration and their support. And I seek that consideration and support as we emerge from the biggest financial crisis the world has faced since the Great Depression, with the lowest debt, amongst the lowest unemployment rates and the highest growth of the world's economies. This is an achievement we should be proud of. The working people, the employers, the employees, the trade unions, the small and big businesses, the employer associations who all made this possible. I give credit to every hard working Australian for what has been achieved during these difficult economic days. I give credit to the Labour giants, Bob Hawke and Paul Keating, as the architects of today's modern prosperity. I give credit to John Howard and Peter Costello for continuing these reforms and I particularly give credit to Kevin Rudd for leading the nation in such difficult times and keeping people in work. And today, I can assure every Australian that their budget will be back in surplus in 2013."

8. The Opportunity

It is always good to be positive about the future.

"So, having seen the global financial crisis and how our nation has responded, it has reinforced my belief that when this nation pulls together, we can do great things.

It's my intention to lead a government that uses that spirit and that will to do even more to harness the talents of all of our people. To do even more to make sure that every child gets a fair go in life and a great education. It's my intention to lead a government that does more to harness the wind and the sun and the new emerging technologies. I will do this because I believe in climate change. I believe human beings contribute to climate change and it is most disappointing to me, as it is to millions of Australians, that we do not have a price on carbon, and in the future we will need one. If elected as Prime Minister, I will re-prosecute the case for a carbon price at home and abroad. I will do that as global economic conditions improve and as our economy continues to strengthen."

9. The Elephant in The Room

It is always good to address the big issue in a speech. In this case it is the Resources Super Profits Tax.

"There's another question on which I will seek consensus and that is the proposed resources super profits tax. Australians are entitled to a fairer share of our inheritance, the mineral wealth that lies in our ground. They are entitled to that fairer share. But to reach a consensus, we need to do more than consult, we need to negotiate. And we must end this uncertainty which is not good for this nation. That's why today I am throwing open the government's door to the mining industry and I ask that in return, the mining industry throws opens its mind. And today, I will ensure that the mining advertisements paid for by the government are cancelled. And in return for this, I ask the mining industry to cease their advertising campaign as a show of good faith and mutual respect. Negotiations will occur with the mining industry, they will be led by the Treasurer and new Deputy Prime Minister, and Minister Martin Ferguson."

10. The Emotional Hook


Always build in an emotional hook - in this case war.

"Can I say as well as dealing with these issues, I want to say something to our troops. To our men and women at home and abroad, we're a grateful country and we acknowledge your sacrifice. Our country relies on you to keep us safe, to keep the peace and to honour the United States and the other alliances that are so important for our nation. The most recent loss of lives of brave Australian soldiers in Afghanistan and the injuries that have befallen our troops remind us all of the depth of the sacrifice that our serving men and women are called on to make. Our thoughts are certainly with the grieving families."

11. The Tribute

Always thank those you are taking over from.

"Finally, I want to pay a tribute to Kevin Rudd. Ultimately Kevin Rudd and I disagreed about the direction of the government. I believed that we needed to do better. But Kevin Rudd is a man of remarkable achievement. He made wonderful history for this nation by saying sorry to indigenous Australians, wonderful history. He was the leader who withdrew our troops from Iraq and had the foresight to reinforce our commitment in Afghanistan. He was the leader who saw us through the global financial crisis, the leader who turned his intelligence and determination to health reform, combating homelessness and closing the gap between indigenous Australians.And he came within a breath of brokering an international agreement on climate change, truly remarkable. Of course, I will be talking to Kevin Rudd about his future in the parliamentary Labor Party. I am also delighted to be standing here with the new Deputy Prime Minister, Wayne Swan. Wayne guided us through the very difficult waters of the global financial crisis, now he's guiding us back into surplus, getting the budget back into black. Wayne is an outstanding Treasurer of this country and I know he will make an outstanding Deputy Prime Minister. Of course there will need to be some consequential changes in our cabinet ministerial arrangements and I will announce them at an appropriate time."

12. The Call to Action

Always end a speech with a call to action.

"In conclusion can I say to my colleagues assembled, to the men and women of the press, I will dedicate my abilities to what I believe in: a nation where hard work is rewarded and where the dignity of work is respected; a nation that prides itself on the excellence of its education system; where the government can be relied on to provide high quality services for all Australians; an Australia that can achieve even greater things in the future.We should not be afraid of the future: a strong Australia, respected as a global force for progress, for peace and for tolerance; bright democracy for the world to admire and a sanctuary for all of our people.

Can I say to the Australian people — there will be some days I delight you, there may be some days I disappoint you, on every day I will be working my absolute hardest for you."

In summary, experience, practice, good advice and a love of language honed as a lawyer came through.

Want help building, writing and delivering a speech. Come to our next course on August 17th or join our mentor program. More details here.

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