A few months ago, I made the point that Gordon Brown tends to pack far too much information into his speeches and still has to take notice of a crucial tip from Winston Churchill about simplicity.
In his final press conference before the Summer recess, he was at it again. At one stage, as you can see below, he managed to mention nine numbers in less than a minute.
The trouble is that a lot of people glaze over when numbers come at them so thick and fast – a problem that’s even worse if, as in this case, they’re delivered in a flat monotonous tone of voice.
And the importance of speakers conveying enthusiasm for their subjects cannot be overestimated – for the very obvious reason that, if a speaker sounds bored by his or her subject matter, why should the audience feel any less bored, let alone be inspired by it?
Add to this Mr Brown’s earnest facial expression and it's hardly surprising that he’s so often referred to ‘dour’.