That said, he did the right thing speaking without notes at this week’s Labour conference in Manchester.
From a technical speaking perspective he:
Made great eye contact
Spoke at a good pace
Told us stories about people he had met
Used repetition to good effect
Emphasized his key point
Ed Milliband is clearly a good public speaker
He opened his speech by talking about someone who lived locally in Salford and how Manchester was a ‘fantastic City’, which held special memories for him.
This was met with thunderous applause
He spoke of another conversation he had recently with a lady called Josephine.
Then another lady who worked at a pub where he lived
He then mentioned two young women in the park; and so it went on.
He rightly complimented our ‘brilliant’ National Health Service twice.
Shared how he had watched nurses ‘come together’ in the A&E department of a hospital in Watford, he received a couple of standing ovations when he said:
“An NHS with time to care”
“I know my dad loved Britain”
In summary, Ed Milliband delivered a well structured, polished and mindful speech that.
A speech most coaches would commend
It was fine.
Fine, but was it memorable?
It was full of the usual:
– Political platitudes we hear all the time
– Constituent stories we hear all the time
– Slants that politicians use against each other all of the time.
If you were to critique Ed Milliband using a best practice checklist he would have ticked most of the boxes,.
Yet, for me, there was still something missing.
The two key ingredients missing were imagination and inspiration
I didn’t hear anything new, inspirational or compelling
In fact, I’m quite sure I would have stifled a few yawns had I been there in person, as I did when I watched the video.
If I were to give Ed Milliband any suggestions other than to be a little more creative and memorable it would be to:
– Stop repeatedly calling his audience friends (the first couple of times were fine but then it quickly became annoying and sounded patronising.)
– Stop gesturing repeatedly with his thumb and first two fingers pressed together. It’s also very distracting.
– Use the platform a little more; own it.
– Not have his back to some of the audience.
– Have a much more memorable and compelling close.
– Dare to be different
If you need help developing your public speaking and presentation skills:
– Book yourself onto a powerful public speaking course.
– Invest in some really good one to one public speaking coaching.
– Get yourself some excellent presentation training
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