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Monday, November 30, 2009

Five steps to writing a speech that motivates


In 2001 pharmaceutical giant Eli Lilly lost its patent on Prozac. At that time Prozac accounted for a quarter of all Lilly’s domestic sales. To say they faced serious economic issues would be an understatement.

But amid the cutbacks and elimination of bonuses, Chairman Sidney Taurel delivered a speech meant to motivate employees through difficult times.

“He stood up and held up a single dollar bill and he said, ‘As the management, and most of all me, should be the ones bearing most of the burden during this time, I will be working next year for this symbolic dollar,’” said Rob Friedman, director of executive communications at Eli Lilly. “It’s something people still remember to this day.”

-Rob Friedman

Friedman's five steps to crafting an effective motivational speech:

Step 1: Empathize with employees.

Step 2: Identify the challenges.

Step 3: Determine what ‘levers’ you can pull.

Step 4: Use anecdotes and examples of ‘heroes.’

Step 4-a: Show examples of failure.

Step 5: Walk the walk.

Read the entire article and hear Friedman here.

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