New Zealand’s Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has been named the most eloquent of global leaders.
Ms Ardern topped a list put together by development coaches, who praised her for her empathy and “softer touch” as a leader. She beat out other heads of state in a competition that analysed hundreds of hours of footage from press conferences, speeches and public addresses in 2020.
The list was compiled by development coaches from the Development Academy wing of Acuity Training, the New Zealand Herald reported.
“Jacinda Ardern employs an empathetic leadership style,” the Development Academy wrote.
“She challenges the common perception that emotional communication shows weakness, instead choosing to approach the public with a softer touch.”
“She has a measured and authoritative sincerity about her – she is kind and compassionate, without shying away from tough issues.”
Three of the top five in the list are female leaders. German Chancellor Angela Merkel came in second place, followed by the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
Scottish Prime Minister Nicola Sturgeon, who is known for her humour, and has been praised for her response to the coronavirus pandemic, came in fifth place.
“Nicola Sturgeon has received a lot of praise for her response to the coronavirus pandemic – and it’s not hard to see why,” the Development Academy said.
“She is clear, calm and compassionate, she is not afraid to be tough or emotional, and she has a great sense of humour.
“There’s no sense of performance with Sturgeon – she is very real.”
Prime Minister Scott Morrison came tenth on the list. The Development Academy assessed he’d “greatly improved his reputation since the country’s devastating bushfires earlier this year”.
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“Morrison has been open, emotional and even vulnerable during his addresses to the Australian people, demonstrating to voters that he shares in their pain.”
The Academy criticised US President Donald Trump and the UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson, saying the leaders needed to improve their presentation styles.
It said Mr Trump has a “thinking out loud approach” and “reacts to questions before he has given himself time to think and offer appropriate answers”.
“He will often jump to a new topic before concluding the previous one, causing his audience to lose interest or become frustrated.
“His overuse of metaphors and analogies is confusing for many, and he occasionally slurs on words.
“Unlike Boris Johnson, who has made noticeable improvements since becoming Prime Minister, Trump has done little to address the flaws in his style of public speaking.”
The Academy said Mr Johnson was a “unique public speaker” who has a tendency to “mutter or waffle” and “use of odd or obscure references often left people confused about his message”.
The development coaches said Mr Johnson had recently improved his communication and presentation skills.
THE TOP 10 MOST ELOQUENT WORLD LEADERS
1. Jacinda Ardern, Prime Minister of New Zealand
2. Angela Merkel, Chancellor of Germany
3. Narendra Modi, Prime Minister of India
4. Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada
5. Nicola Sturgeon, First Minister of Scotland
6. Mette Frederiksen, Prime Minister of Denmark
7. Emmanuel Macron, President of France
8. Erna Solberg, Prime Minister of Norway
9. Giuseppe Conte, Prime Minister of Italy
10. Scott Morrison, Prime Minister of Australia