One of the comments once mentioned by the Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong has stuck on in my head that, more than fifty percent of leadership is communication. How important is that in the era of 24×7 media beast where every second is churning content which is predominantly worthless, and where every pause that one stops in a speech is psycho-analysed and criticized. Leadership is about presentation now a days. Tough decision making is a part of the repertoire of leadership, but conveying that message is even more important. Spin Doctors make or break ones leadership campaigns. Mamata Banerjee’s Poriborton wave to unseat the Left in Bengal was amplified by a supportive regional language and national media.
Let in bring in two contrasts: The Indian Prime Minister is a man of few words, and the other top leadership in India is pretty aloof as well choosing to interact only on selected platforms. In the midst of a crisis of confidence in the Nation, if the top leadership does not speak to the masses on a regular basis, it simply does not breathe confidence in their ability to lead. Communication is of the essence in a moment of crisis. Just think of the the young queen’s address during the Blitzkrieg in 1940, when her palace was bombed quipping that now she would be able to see Eastern parts of London better. Now how many Indian leaders can inspire that spirit in us today.
Barack Obama epitomizes the essence of effective Political Oratory. Bill Clinton is another charming communicator along with his ideological colleague Tony Blair who know ‘how to close the deal’. Obama, a Nobel Peace Laureate infuses confidence by communicating stuff which matters to its stakeholder community. His Berlin, Cairo and Jakarta addresses are stuff which dreams are made off.
Can India have a ‘Yes We Can’ moment?