effective communication skills

Famous Speeches

Part of the secret of Maximum Advantage is that we have studied the speeches of greatest leaders of all time to discover the methods and techniques they used to inspire millions of people. By reviewing these speeches or attending a Maximum Advantage workshop, these same powerful techniques used to influence and inspire can be yours.

Here are some of what we consider to be the greatest speeches of all time. As you read them you will not be able to help but be inspired by them. Even though they are only words on a web page, their power transcends medium and time.

As you read them, examine each one and ask yourself these questions:

  • Does the speaker use a repetition of word patterns to create a hypnotic effect?
  • How does the speaker create pictures using words? Hint: "Blood, sweat and tears" is quite a picture!
  • What assumptions and presuppositions are in the speeches?
  • How do these speakers use adjectives to allow the listener to become part of the words?
  • How is each speech tailored to its intended audience?
  • What kind of similies and metaphors do they use to create links between their subject and things that listeners are already familiar with?
Title Speaker Date
I Have A Dream Martin Luther King Jr. August 28, 1963
The Gettysburg Address Abraham Lincoln November 19, 1863
Blood Sweat And Tears Sir Winston Churchill May 14, 1940
Declaration Of War On Japan Franklin Delano Roosevelt December 8, 1941

Final Pep Talk Before The Invasion Of Normandy Note: contains colorful language as might be expected to be used in the army.

General George Patton May 17, 1944
No Easy Road To Freedom Nelson Mandela Sept. 21, 1953
Ask Not What Your Country Can Do For You John F. Kennedy January 20, 1961
We Choose To Go To The Moon John F. Kennedy September 12, 1962