Inspiration like Clockwork

Inspirational Speech Structure

While attending a master class by the current World Champion of Public Speaking Dananjaya J Hettiarachchi we were treated to his version of the best way to structure an inspirational speech.

How lucky to be able to experience such experienced speakers giving freely of their skills and means so we can continue to learn the finer points of how they dissect and examine every word, phrase, punctuation, expression, intent, gesture, position, prop,  of their speeches.Clock

He uses a clock face to demonstrate his structure. Below we will examine the elements he thinks have the best effect for this style of speech.

He divides the clock face into 4 segments starting at 12 and going to three then from three to six then six to nine and finally returning to 12.

As we have done with other structures we always start with the purpose of the speech.  Dananjaya then recommends a Foundational Phrase to really zero into your purpose.  This phrase needs to be short, sweet and rhyming.

By short he means something like  ‘Actions speak louder than words’ or some rhyming ones ‘ Walk your Talk’, ‘The Phrase that Pays’, ‘When in Doubt leave it Out’.

By sweet he means it has to touch you in some way or rekindle an emotion. So the common ones like ‘walk your talk’ are sweet because we can relate to them. They represent a value that you may possess or know someone who optimises the saying.

Hopefully you know what rhyming means and can manage to include it where possible. You will see that the first example ‘Actions speak louder than words’ doesn’t actually rhyme however it has a sweet rhyming feel to it when said so is very acceptable.

The First Quarter

You begin with these elements of purpose and phrase and build your speech around them.  When using the first quarter of the clock we start at 12 with the quest, A log and arduous search for something. Bringing your phrase in to your opening quest story adds congruency to your opening story.


Article by Terry

Over the years Terry has learned to be a Husband, Father, Grandfather, Keynote Speaker, Presenter, Teacher, Coach, Mentor, Business Owner/Manager, Trainer, Facilitator, Teacher, Sailor, Dancer, Worker, Gardener, Reader, Music Lover and someone who thoroughly enjoys helping people to become better. We are all evolving by learning all the time, how and what we choose to learn makes us who we become. The key to Terrys passionate and enthusiastic approach is savouring the experience of contributing to the growth, action and enjoyment of the individual with their career.

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