Do your speeches achieve company goals? 6 vital steps

It’s not enough to have an audience chuckle at the jokes and applaud at the end; what’s your overall strategy?

Perhaps your CEO shambled through a speech here. Or he won a hearty round of applause there.

Glasses perched on his nose, he channeled your eloquence to warm audiences on cold winter days with his grandfatherly charm.

But did the speeches achieve anything? Did your organization accomplish any goals through all the lectern-thumping? And how do you measure that concretely?

If you can’t answer these questions, several industry pros say, it’s time to weigh the effectiveness of your overall speechwriting strategy.

The issue is not, “I’m going to give these speeches on these subjects,” but what you are trying to accomplish long-term, says Rob Friedman, senior director of executive communications at Eli Lilly.

“It’s what the hell is the goal that you’re pursuing, which is aligned with what your company is after?” he says.

Often speechwriters think their work can’t be evaluated in business terms, says Grant Neely of Pfizer. He disagrees. “You can measure the overall value of a comprehensive executive communications program,” he says.

Here are some tips for a successful speaking strategy—and for measuring whether individual speeches are effective:

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