It’s official: I am now an award-winning speechwriter!  The folks who judge the Cicero Awards decided that my speech “The Sound of Leadership: What women know and businesses need to hear” was this year’s best-written speech on the subject of diversity.

Back in May I blogged about the process of writing the speech.  Now it’s been published in a special issue of Vital Speeches of the Day.

I’ll probably write more about this later, but right now I have a victory lap to complete.


Q: When is a blockbuster not a blockbuster?
A: When you can’t tell anyone about it.

I walked into a meeting recently and the client greeted me with, “We’ve just been singing your praises!” (Well, don’t stop on my account.)  It seems a series of profiles I’d written was generating spectacular page-views on their intranet.  One in particular had done “blockbuster” numbers – 12 times their average readership.

It’s the kind of result you want to stand on the rooftops and crow about – or at least put in a marketing email to current and prospective clients.Writing that gets results is rare. Not to mention valuable.

But I can’t.  Sensitive subject, confidential, etc., etc. This client doesn’t have a problem with my telling people I wrote the pieces…I just can’t say what they’re about.

Same sort of thing happened a long time ago with speech I wrote for a nonprofit Executive Director that got published in Vital Speeches of the Day. It was my first Vital speech, and that’s quite a milestone for folks in my profession. The client was pretty happy about it, too.

Naturally, I asked if I could use it in my marketing and you could have knocked me over with a feather when she said no. Said she didn’t want anyone to know that she hadn’t written the speech herself. And yes, of course, that’s her choice to make. But I went on to write even more awesome speeches for the woman, and it kills me that I can’t show them to anyone else.

Occupational hazard, I guess.