Election Special: What To Listen To In a Speech

What To Listen To In a Speech

It is election season. Which means, you will get to hear heaps of speeches by the leaders (and non-leaders) of India. They will talk relentlessly about whom you should vote for, and why. But with numerous speeches hurled at your way, how can you decide who is genuine enough to put your stakes on? Here is an article that will tell you what great, genuine speeches are made of. Here is an article that will tell you what to listen to in a speech this election season so that you don’t blame your ears and regret your vote in the future.

A great, genuine speech doesn’t beat around the bush

What To Listen To In a SpeechImagine you are standing in this scorching April heat one afternoon, listening to a political leader live, right in front of you. The difference is that while you are sweating under hot sunlight, and he/she is protected from the same by a tent overhead. At this moment, are you going to appreciate a speech that sounds infinite? Or would you rather that this speaker gets to the point quickly and address your concern as soon as possible?

An effective speech does just that. It doesn’t beat around the bush. It hits the bull’s eye in the first five minutes of commencement. A genuine, well-prepared speech will be clear in its aim. The speaker will immediately be able to tell you what this speech is about, whom it is addressing and more importantly, what it is addressing. All of this – in short, concise, and clear sentences.

Listen to Martin Luther King’s ‘I Have A Dream’ speech. Not only is the speech clear about its central theme – which is freedom and equality, but King effectively connects the speech for his audience to his own expectations and hope about his children in the future. The ability of a speech to dive down from the political to the personal is what makes it memorable.

An efficient speech is equally emotionally charged

What To Listen To In a SpeechTruth be told, no matter how much the speaker out there pretends to care about the country’s political crisis or the plight of the poor – if the speaker cannot intonate his/her concern, the speech will fall flat. How can this intonation be imbibed in a speech? The speaker cannot fake the emotional energy layered in his speech, no matter how great an actor he is. It comes naturally.

A good political speech, or any speech, for that matter, has this element of emotionally charged energy within it. A great speech is the one which allows the speaker to exhibit a vibrant rainbow of emotions in just a couple of minutes. A genuine speech lets the speaker connect to his/her audience through personal anecdotes, body language and vocal range. Usually, you will be able to easily figure where and when your speaker is going flat in the speech. But sometimes, it is hard to pinpoint.

If this is the case, then keep an alert ear for any hesitation that might creep in the speaker’s voice. Any tinge of uncertainty, any sound of unsure thought – and you know, either the speech is ill-prepared or the speaker is. In any case, a good political leader has the inborn potential to make his/her audience feel at home. So, if his/her speech is any doing anything out of line, you know where your vote isn’t going.

What to listen to in a speech? Pacing

What To Listen To In a SpeechThe pace of a good speech is more important than you think. Try to remember the last time you lied or tried to cover up a lie in front of your loved ones. Try to think back – were your words shooting out of your mouth like bullets? Most likely, yes. So, when you hear a speech that is rushed, with sentences half eaten by the anxiety of the speaker – can you digest it?

A good speech is prepared while keeping the pace in mind. It’s sentences are layered with words that are evenly stressed. A good speech is like a sonnet. It is a song in the form of prose. Your speaker cannot be as slow as a tortoise or as fast as a leopard while delivering the speech. If a speech sounds too slow and unsure, or too fast and suspicious, it is not the speech, it is the speaker. But listen to it carefully, and the speech is sending out crucial signals.

Next time you are confused about what to listen to in a speech, track its pacing. You will know which speech and speaker is genuinely worried or concerned about the nation’s development and which one is not.

A good speech comes with a great choice of language

What To Listen To In a SpeechIf your political leader is not aware of the level at which you can grasp concepts important for your personal and the national growth, then you will most likely listen to a speech filled with jargon. That is a bad speech. Your political leader might understand the terrible fiscal state of the country, for example, but if he knows that the word fiscal is a jargon and still opts to use it, then that is neither a speech you should listen to nor a speaker whom you should vote for.

A genuine political leader is sensitive to the needs and understanding of the audience. He/she will tone down the vocabulary of the speech for those who might not understand the whole meaning. He/she will also not hesitate to level up his/her speech in front of those who are not easily persuaded by simple words.

A good speech customizes itself to the needs of its listeners. And if the speech that you are currently listening doesn’t do that, then you be the judge.

A sound speech is filled with statistics

 election campaignYou are not listening to just any random speech. This speech has the potential to influence your decision. This speech has the ability to convince you and change the future of your country. So, this speech has to be an informed one – filled with facts and figures wherever required. If your speaker is going round in circles with vague, abstract claims, this is a clear sign that neither the speech nor the speaker is going to work for your benefit.

A good speech is filled with statistics. For every claim it makes, it provides sound evidence. Listen for these small pieces of evidence in a speech. See if these facts and figures exist to prove only one’s point or to negate the opposition’s claim as well. How well does it present these statistics? And if it steers away from doing so, is there a justification behind it? Then decide for yourself.

A speech, during an election campaign, isn’t some simple collection of statements. These speeches subconsciously enable you to choose your next political leader, and eventually, the fate of the country. These speeches can, indirectly, make or break the progress of a nation. So, choose wisely. Listen to what the ones at the top are telling you. Listen carefully. Now that you know what to listen to in a speech, your task is all the easier for it.

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