Anyone who watches “The Crown”—Netflix’s majestic drama about the early years of Queen Elizabeth II’s reign—can attest to the power of oration to shape perceptions, change minds and win favor. The show features several speeches, ranging from pitch-perfect to terrible, which offer ample fodder for those crafting a presentation.
Here are three takeaways from the show for speechwriters to keep in mind:
1. Don’t speak down to people. In season 2, episode 5, the queen delivers a speech at an auto factory to a crowd of blue-collar workers. She reads directly from a script laden with stilted, pretentious language—and outright insults.
“Many of you are living uneventful, lonely lives,” she coldly intones. “Perhaps you don’t understand that on your steadfastness and ability to withstand the fatigue of dull, repetitive work depends in great measure the happiness and prosperity of the community as a whole.”