Monday, August 29, 2011

Is Obama losing his confidence?

Many of my friends and other observers have commented that Obama has lost his confidence. He certainly has not shown that strong, engaging style that seduced us all before his election. But has he lost his confidence?
No doubt there are lots of good reasons to expect him to have done that. But I can only comment on how his style reflects that.
The myriad speeches that he has to deliver, that are not of his own making, are normally delivered from the 'dreaded' tele-prompter. The problem here is that he is now too smooth. He delivers in complete sentences and does not have those engaging pauses that were so natural to him when he was committed to his own election speeches. The impression is that he is aloof; almost speaking down to us. Not wanting to engage.
One interesting example, that shows he can still do it right, was the White House Press dinner, in June, where he ripped into Donald Trump and was outstandingly funny. His style was back to his best. Huge pauses and lots of speaking in 'ideas' as opposed to full sentences. He looked as if he was talking 'with' his audience.
His other huge weakness is his handling of Questions, especially the press briefings. Someone has got to tell him to cut his answers to 30 seconds or less. The more he speaks the less we listen and therefore the less we are impressed.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Pussy-Footing North American Interviewers?

I saw this clip the other day about Mike Lazaridis (RIM/Blackberry CEO) abruptly stopping a BBC interview. But it was the comment of the Young Turk reporter that shocked me. Do interviewers in the US really go softly with CEO's so that they do not lose their jobs?


Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Japan's Government should be seriously censured over their handling of the nuclear reactor accident.

Of course we must allow for every country to have its own culture on how it tells good and bad news, but in the 21st century it is stupid if governments of advanced countries do not take into account how many communication methods there are for people to be fed information. The Japanese government has a duty to deal with the terrible tsunami and earthquake disaster. A small part of that is the Fukishima reactor problem. The government must have proper experts who know how uranium fuel reacts (breaks down) to produce heat for generating power. They MUST not pander to the hysterical, ignorant people who have hijacked the media airwaves with daily, grossly inflated scenarios of disaster. What is the use of saying that there is nothing to worry about on one day and then saying that people should not drink the water, the next day? What can the poor ignorant masses think? The government must get the true facts and stick to them and keep them in the context of reality not fantasy and not keep reacting to every bit of hysteria flown up by the media and the other anti-nuclear fuel fanatics. By the way, it is official: a total of 35 people actually died as a result of Chernobyl. Rather less than the 15,000+ that are dead as a result of the tsunami!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

It is how you say it ... as well

I was interested in the comparison of the HSBC quarterly results and Standard Chartered's results a few days ago.

HSBC produced far higher profits that Standard Chartered and did better than expected. Standard Chartered did not exceed the expectations but did produce higher growth, yet again, as they have done for the last few years.

But the content of the SCB message was really upbeat and optimistic. HSBC was not and was peppered with caveats and caution. SCB's share price rose nicely. HSBC's fell.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Marvelous Quote - Winston Churchill

Good quotes are wonders to liven up speeches. But only use them if they are relevant to the topic.

Here is one, attributed to WC, which was used in a speech congratulating someone on their 50th birthday.

"As you get older it is not so much that you tend to avoid temptations .... temptations tend to avoid you!"

Monday, February 14, 2011

Make Valentine's day last

I hope you all had a romantic evening with the one you love. Remember do not try too hard, talking to impress. People love to talk. I was once told how interesting I was. On that occasion I had listened to her talk all evening and just asked questions.

You know you are truly in love with each other when you can spend hours with each other without saying a word, and you are totally comfortable and relaxed.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Mubarak's change in style

Watching the enmbattled President speak well it is interesting to note how badly the crisis has affected his public speaking confidence. These two links show you how he communicated with great power and character in 2007 and how he was yesterday.

What a contrast!

There is no doubt, When times are easy all you have to do is say the right things. When times are not good it is more important that you say the things right. That is when you have to really engage your listeners. This is something that Tony Blair really excelled at. When he was in trouble he would be at is most persuasive best.

Mubarak certainly is not going to win any waverers if he looks like he did yesterday. - In 2007 being interviewed. - Yesterday's speech.