“Anyone who thinks there is a gap between what leaders say and
what they do doesn’t understand the nature of leadership.
For leaders, the words very often are the deeds.”
Leading Lines is the essential guide to powerful speechmaking in a complex and sceptical world.
Based on 25 years’ experience working with leaders across government, business and politics, Lucinda Holdforth explains how to create a speech that succeeds, even under the most difficult circumstances, and illustrates her points with dozens of fascinating case studies.
Leading Lines is an ode to the enduring power and relevance of speeches and an argument for their vital role in our democracy.
Praise for Leading Lines
'Deep professional insight and acute understanding of what makes a speech tick.'
- John WH Denton, AO, Secretary General of the International Chamber of Commerce
'Eloquent, enjoyable and necessary…the essential guide to the purpose, process and impact of speechwriting. Leadership in all its forms, indeed democracy itself, begins here.'
- Allan Gyngell AO, President of the Australian Institute of International Affairs
'In a style both learned and personal, Holdforth teaches speakers and writers how to give their audiences the human connection they seek. I’m not only enlightened by this book, I’m moved by it.'
- David Murray, Editor & Publisher, Pro Rhetoric; Executive Director, Professional Speechwriters Association
'This book is for all those who love words and the power they have to change lives. While Leading Lines will be an indispensable tool for CEOs and speechwriters of every kind, it is also, quite simply, a cracking read, attractive to anyone who likes a good story.'
- Tegan Bennett Daylight, writer, teacher critic.
'Leading Lines is not just for politicians or CEOs. It’s for anyone who cares about making a better society: every artist and scientist, every teacher and student, every activist and up-and-coming young leader should read this book. Holdforth shows how taking charge of oratory and the public self – how actually believing in something, and expressing it beautifully – can help you rise to the top and make a difference.'
- Charlotte Wood, author
'A book for anyone who aspires to a leadership role. Holdforth draws on her formidable expertise and experience working with CEOs like me to deliver this practical guide.'
- Geoff Dixon, CEO and Managing Director of Qantas, 2001-2008
'I wish I had this book back in 1980 when I started! …The essential handbook for anyone who has to stand before an audience and persuade.'
- The Hon. Kim Beazley AC, Governor of Western Australia, former Deputy Prime Minister of Australia