President-elect Obama's team needs to keep our new leader from making the sort of speech he made Saturday, Nov. 22.
His weekly address this past Saturday, on the formation of his economic team, presented via YouTube, was--in a word--weak. Just take a look:
Where's the weakness? As you will see, Obama was clearly reading from a prepared text. Nothing wrong from that, but you don't want it to so clearly look like you're reading.
Doing so always gives the speaker an inauthentic look. Worse, he didn't look into the camera.
If a teleprompter was used, it was clearly placed off to his left. Thus, he was constantly looking in that direction and his eyes often shifted. The leader of a country needs to fix his gaze straight ahead when addressing the nation and appear to look into the eyes of his audience.
We know Barack's team can do better. Take a look at his Saturday radio speech just the week before on Nov. 15:
Of the three, his best set presentation into the camera was from his 30-minute paid campaign ad of October 29th.
Candidate Obama's very best moment in the debates is illustrative, too, I think. For some of us, it clearly came in the final debate when for one very authentic moment, he looked right into the camera and spoke about health care. He seemed especially human then, and in perfect touch with his audience.
Now, there may be some reading this who might think I'm calling for fakery on the part of our new leader. Not at all. I'm just hoping he not appear again on YouTube, or on television, as he did yesterday. And yes, he's got better things to do than spend his time working on his TV appearance. After all, he's forming a new government in extraordinarily challenging times.
One master of the art of connection with his audience to look to for a key for another way to do this was the late Tom Snyder of NBC's Tomorrow . Many thought him to be one of the best. Those who liked him felt as if he was talking to them every night. Snyder had his producer, a man he felt extraordinarly comfortable with, stand with his face right at camera level and just to the side of the lens so Snyder seemed as if he was talking right through the lens to us, and yet he was really talking to his buddy.
That's why he seemed so human and genuine, even if he was over-the-top sometimes. Frankly, it's always been a mystery to me how Snyder still didn't appear as if he was looking to the side with his friend's face where it was, but somehow it worked.
I don't know one-tenth of what many of President-elect Obama's advisors know about so many issues, or how to run such an amazing campaign, but every now and then, I think they could do even better by Barack.