Yes, dear readers, today is the sesquicentennial of Abraham Lincoln delivering his "Gettysburg Address."
Although Lincoln's prognostication of the impact of his address (The world with little note, nor long remember what we say here...) was clearly off, the Address was both a noble tribute to the fallen and a rallying call to the North to press on to victory.
It is also oratory that would work well with today's sound bite and Twitter-obsessed audience.
It's short, only 267 words.
It's Tweetable. At 1439 characters (that includes spaces), the entire address can be delivered in 11 tweets; w abbr,even <.
It's full of sound bites. The reporter's challenge is not trying to find something quotable, but rather selecting which quote(s) to use.
But is Lincoln's Gettysburg Address adaptable for use by the Powerpoint addicted speaker?
The presenter in the following video demonstrates the added power Lincoln could have had, had Powerpoint been available to him. The PPT slides were developed by Google's Peter Norvig.
Note 1: the Address with Powerpoint starts at 6 minutes, 40 seconds into the video.
This is International Listening Awareness Month, a time to focus on using the power of listening to make our lives, our communities, and our nations better.
As part of the awareness campaign, I am presenting a free workshop in Washington DC (21st & L NW) on Thursday, March 21, 2013 from 3:00 to 4:30pm.
I've titled the workshop, Listening - The Super Hero of Communication: How to listen your way to higher profits, healthier businesses, and happier relationships.
Here are some of the things those attending will learn:
4 Cs of listening. Apply these and your listening will improve immediately.
5 listening behaviors speakers hate. (You probably use at least two.)
How a start up snatched a multi-million dollar contract from an industry giant, all because of better listening skills.
Why so called "active listening" can backfire, and a technique to use instead.
Admission is free, but reservations are required. CLICK HERE for more details and to register.
Although most of you know me for my presentations, speech coaching, and news interview training, listening has fascinated me since I was a kid. I have studied and conducted listening research since the mid-1970s. And I find that:
Listening is exciting, powerful, rewarding!
If you're nearby, come join me on the 21st. If you're not in the Washington DC metro area, but know people here who would benefit from the workshop, please let them know.
"President Barack Obama is a master at limiting, shaping and
manipulating media coverage of himself and his White House."
They go on to say,
"The results are transformational. With more technology, and fewer
resources at many media companies, the balance of power between the White House
and press has tipped unmistakably toward the government. This is an arguably dangerous
development, and one that
the Obama White House — fluent in digital media and no fan of the mainstream
press — has exploited cleverly and ruthlessly. And future presidents from both
parties will undoubtedly copy and expand on this approach."
Click here to read VandeHei and Allen's full article and let me know your reaction. Is Obama, by denying reporters opportunities to ask him tough questions, a form of limiting the freedom of the press? With much of the information the public gets coming from the government, can the public be well informed? Any viable suggestions for keeping future presidents more open in their dealings with journalists?
The conventional wisdom seems to be that Joe Biden is going to be wiped out by Paul Ryan. Why? Because, the thinking goes, Joe Biden is everyone's lovable, but
crazy, uncle. He is gaffe prone. He has never demonstrated any depth of knowledge of financal details.
other hand, Paul Ryan is the ultimate policy wonk, for whom an enjoyable
evening is sitting reading the federal budget. His command of budgetary issues will show up Biden's lack of substance.
The Obama campaign is clearly worried. Biden has been pulled in for several hours of debate prep daily for nearly a week.
But perhaps Democrats are being overly cautious; Republican, overconfident. Both can learn from this lession from Ronald Reagan.
Ronald Reagan's first debate of his reelection run in 1984 was a disaster. Some campaign staff coached him to master mounds of financial numbers and other statistics. But Reagan was not a detailed numbers guy.
The result? He stumbled. He looked uncertain, confused. He was off his game. And the dominent impression from the debate was "he's too old."
In preparation for the second debate, Deputy Chief of Staff
Mike Deaver proclaimed, "Let Reagan be Reagan." The President
followed the now-famous dictum and went back to doing what he did best: sharing his vision for America and connecting with the voters.
Here's what will bring victory Thursday night:
Let Biden be Biden (but without the gaffes). Don't try to turn Biden into a statistician. Give him control of a couple of topics in which he sounds in control of key figures. Then let him do what he does best: relate to the needs of average
Let Ryan be Ryan. But humanize him. Fewer numbers, more impact of those numbers on the average American. Demonstrate he knows people even better than numbers. More vision. Most viewers are no more excited about numbers than Reagan.
Keep Ryan passionate, but not angry or testy. Follow the
example of his running-mate, Mitt Romney, who, while assertive and energized
and confident, was unfailingly pleasant in the way he responded.
Because crazy or not, no one likes their uncle to be attacked.
Last night's first presidential debate of 2012 produced two winners.
Viewers and pundits across the political spectrun agreed it was a good performance for Romney; Obama, not so much.
But the big winners were the viewers thanks to the open segment format and thanks to moderator Jim Lehrer.
Some commentators criticized Lehrer for "losing control," even suggesting he seemed, as it were, to fade into the background.
Well, shame on Lehrer. Doesn't he know the star of the debate is supposed to be the moderator?! And how dare he sit so far downstage, away from the candidates that he almost appeared to be one of the audience members.
In fact, why is he sitting at all? Shouldn't he be on stage, stalking about, ready to pounce with the "gotcha" question that will create the defining moment of the debate, possibly even the election?
Isn't the role of the candidates to be the props for the moderator's dazzzling knowledge (accuracy insignificant) of the issues, sagacious questions, and secret desires for an invitation for Dancing with the Stars?
Apparently, Lehrer thinks not.
He is from the old school of newspaper journalism, when reporters reported the news. They did not try to be the news. Even those who moved on to television, viewed themselves as reporters first, celebrities second (if at all).
So Jim Lehrer let Romney and Obama discuss, agree, disagree, frame and reframe issues. And the American voter got to see and hear the candidates unfiltered.
What's friendly about change? Not much. Change produces stress, which produces resistance, but it doesn't have to be that way.With the Change-Friendly Leadership framework, leaders will learn to engage people's head, hearts, and hopes to achieve lasting, effective change in any organization.
That's the promise on the cover of the just released book, Change-Friendly Leadership.
And it's the promise the author, Dr. Rodger Dean Duncan, delivers on in his book.
In the interest of full disclosure, Rodger is a friend of mine. So I'm biased.
But I've also read most of the best-selling leadership books of the past 30 years. Change-Friendly Leadership is among the best.
It's based on sound human relations principles, not gimmicks or manipulation. You can feel good about following its principles.
It's practical. You can start implementing immediately.
A few years ago, I conducted a survey of over 250 business executives. I asked them to list behaviors on the part of listeners they found irritating. I then asked them to select the behavior they found most irritating.
The winner? Interrupting. (By a two-to-one margin over the runner up.)
Now two of my Certified Listening ProfessionalTM1 colleagues, Dr. Rick Bommelje and Dr. Manny Steil, report that interrupting can be bad for your health.
Here is the report from their "Listening Leaders Newsletter:"
Several university studies have found that people who interrupt conversations are at greater risk for heart problems.
In fact, one study at Duke University found that people who interrupt are up to seven times more likely to get heart disease!
Why is this so? The researchers theorize that people who interrupt are excessively competitive and controlling - two hallmarks of the worst "Type A" personalities.
But here is the amazing kicker: These same high-risk people can lower their risk without totally altering their personalities...and without any drugs, exercise or dietary changes.
All they have to do is practice being good listeners.
In one study, the test subjects focused on being silent while others talked.
The result? They lowered both their blood pressure and their stress hormone levels.
Listening Leader Laser Lesson: The next time you interrupt someone, consider the costs to yourself.
Copyright by International Listening Leaders Institute. Reprinted with permission from "The Listening Leaders Newsletter," a weekly internet newsletter. For your own personal subscription, go to www.ListeningLeaders.com
1Trademark of the International Listening Association (www.Listen.org)