Quotes for Public Speakers (No. 188) – Aristotle

Aristotle (384 BC – 322 BC) Greek Philosopher

“[I]t is not enough to know what we ought to say; we must also say it as we ought … It is, essentially, a matter of the right management of the voice to express the various emotions—of speaking loudly, softly, or between the two; of high, low, or intermediate pitch; of the various rhythms that suit various subjects. These are the three things—volume of sound, modulation of pitch, and rhythm—that a speaker bears in mind.”

— Aristotle

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A Speech for the Boys of Summer

The Little League Baseball World Series is currently underway in Williamsport, Pennsylvania. I have not been following the competition closely, but yesterday I came across this story on ESPN.

The team of Cumberland (from Rhode Island) lost 8-7 against Chicago and was eliminated from the tournament. The kids from Cumberland were, understandably, gutted. But their coach, Dave Belisle, gathered them together to deliver a final speech. The moment was captured on camera.

It was a great speech for many reasons. Here are five of them.

1.  It was a difficult moment for the team, but Belisle still delivered when he had to.

2.  Eye contact: “Everybody heads up high, let’s talk for a moment here. Look, I gotta see your eyes, guys.”

3.  The speech was all about the boys: what they had accomplished; what they had learned; how they had grown as individuals and as a team.

4.  Belisle gave the boys a call to action and a standard to which they should hold themselves for the rest of their lives: “You’re going to take back for the rest of your life what you provided for a town in Cumberland. You had the whole place jumping. You had the whole state jumping. You had New England jumping. You had ESPN jumping. Because you wanna know why? They like fighters. They like sportsmen. They like guys that don’t quit. They like guys that play the right way.”

5.  It was a speech from the heart and Belisle was not afraid to show his vulnerability: “I love you guys. I’m going to love you forever. You’ve given me the most precious moment of my athletic and coaching career, and I’ve been coaching a long time. I’m getting to be an old man, I need memories like this, I need kids like this. You’re all my boys. You’re the boys of summer.”

It’s great to see Belisle setting such a fine example of how a sports coach should act in defeat, especially when coaching a group of boys or girls. I am certain that no player on the Cumberland team will ever forget that two-minute speech.

You can read the entire text of Belisle’s speech here.

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Quotes for Public Speakers (No. 187) – Robin Williams

Robin Williams (1951 - 2014) American Actor and Comedian

Robin Williams (1951 – 2014) American Actor, Comedian and Producer

“You’re only given one little spark of madness. You mustn’t lose it.”

— Robin Williams

Photo courtesy of Eva Rinaldi / Flickr
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Quotes for Public Speakers (No. 186) – Francis de Sales

Francis de Sales (1567 - 1622) Bishop of Geneva and Saint of the Catholic Church

Francis de Sales (1567 – 1622) Bishop of Geneva, Saint in the Catholic Church

“Do not wish to be anything but what you are, and try to be that perfectly.”

— Francis (François) de Sales

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“The Power of Public Speaking”: An Interview

Dukascopy Bank is a Swiss online bank that provides trading services, particularly in the foreign exchange marketplace. One of its subsidiaries, Dukascopy TV, broadcasts taped and live shows about business matters on the Internet.

Recently, Dukascopy invited me to stop by their studio and give a short interview on “The Power of Public Speaking”. Here’s the result:

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Quotes for Public Speakers (No. 185) – Phil Mickelson

Phil Mickelson – American Professional Golfer

“It has been a lot of work. I still feel as though there is a lot of value in the proper preparation.”

— Phil Mickelson

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