Presentation training elected Toronto’s mayor

Toronto’s new mayor obviously did some presentation training with a public speaking trainer and paid close attention to at least one of the skills he learned.

Focus, focus, focus

One of the first lessons a presentation trainer would have taught Rob Ford, Toronto’s new mayor would have been focus. There are thousands of issues in a city the size of Toronto and one of Ford’s biggest presentation training tasks would have been to select those key messages that would resonate best with Toronto voters.

One message takes the prize

Ford knew what the Toronto electorate wanted and he promised to deliver on their wants. He promised to cut the waste at Toronto City Hall and reduce expenses across the board without reducing services. Because he was long on promises and short on specifics, he was criticized by most of Toronto’s political pundits. But Ford stuck to the mantra he and his public speaking trainer focused on. Whoever worked with him understood that, even if it’s heavily criticized, a single message repeated again and again is more powerful than a number of messages or a change in direction.

His focus was obvious and intentional

On election night, Toronto political pundits said his focus on a single message was a strong factor in his decisive victory. In his victory speech, Ford himself said “We were focused. They could not get us off our message.” Ford must now shift his focus to reaching out to those he will need to help him begin to deliver on his promises. If his commitment is strong enough, if he can win the allies and follow up words with actions, he may again surprise his critics and deliver much of what he promised. That will require an incredible amount of focus, hard work and probably more than a little good luck. For Rob Ford, the hard part has just begun.

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About Thomas Moss

Thomas Moss is a speaker, writer and coach who provides business communications services, primarily in the Greater Toronto Area, including Oshawa, Whitby, Ajax, Pickering, Markham, Richmond Hill, Newmarket, Vaughan, Brampton and Mississauga. Service is also available outside of the GTA.

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