The true traits of an eloquent public speaker and a strong leader

In the aftermath of the mosque attack that killed 50 people in New Zealand, Jacinda Ardern, the country’s Prime Minister has earned international acclaim for her handling of the tragedy. Through her stirring words and solid actions, Ms Ardern has exemplified the true traits of a strong leader and an eloquent public speaker.

In her short yet moving speech about the mass shooting in Christchurch, Jacinda Ardern displayed diligent use of spoken words. Describing the incident as “one of New Zealand’s darkest days”, she felt the pain of the victims and sought to foster a sense of unity, describing the victims as ‘us’:

They are us. The person who has perpetuated this violence against us is not. They have no place in New Zealand. There is no place in New Zealand for such acts of extreme and unprecedented violence, which it is clear this act was.

As the world’s youngest female head of government, Jacinda Ardern has demonstrated a stunning capacity to speak with courage to a nation passing through difficult times.

“New Zealand mourns with you. We are one,” Jacinda Ardern said in her speech to thousands of people who gathered to remember the victims. She also spoke to the students of a school where some of the victims attended, urging the students to “let New Zealand be a place where there is no tolerance for racism. Ever.”

She told grieving families, “We cannot know your grief, but we can walk with you at every stage.” She understood the pain and the needs of her nation, then spoke and acted accordingly. Her comforting words of support for the victims were swiftly followed by brave moves.

Her immediate call to action towards announcing reforms to make the country safer from firearms by banning specific weapons shows what effective leadership looks like in times of crisis.

Her authentic way of speaking and affirmative leadership style are to be applauded. She has empathised with the victims, encouraged unity and made a rapid move for action by banning the weapons used in the assault. Ms Ardern’s powerful words and decisive actions have clearly shown the way.

As a young female nation leader, she has broken new ground proving her ability to take the lead in times of crisis. Different to other world leaders, she set the tone through respect, compassion and understanding.

Along the way, Ms Ardern displayed authenticity. She did not hold back from showing her emotions when meeting the victims, yet spoke powerfully in Parliament with her distinct move of rejecting to mention the name of the suspected killer. “He may have sought notoriety, but we in New Zealand will give him nothing,” she said. “Not even his name.”

Through her eloquent words of solace and assertive tone when the need called for it, Ms Ardern has displayed both compassion and strength. Her fine choice of words foster a great sense of unity, kindness and respect. Her language of inclusivity and diversity are admirable. She has proved to be a remarkable speaker and leader in a time of grief for her nation.

As a Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern, stands out internationally as a leader who speaks to move and inspire people around the world. Other nation leaders as well as corporate leaders can learn so much from Ardern’s humble yet solid style of speech coupled with concrete actions. 

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