photo of President Obama's US acceptance speech

On the subject of...inspiration

Published on
June 23, 2020
Written By
Elise Brown
Digital Content Consultant

TEDxMelbourne looks back at Barack Obama’s victory speech

Our Open Mic Night is coming up in just a few weeks (well March 27th to be exact) and we’re excited! Are you thinking of submitting an entry this year? We’re looking for 10 speakers who have a topic they care about and want to share it with the TEDx Melbourne community in three minutes or less.

To help get your creative juices flowing we dug into the (YouTube) archives for speeches that have inspired us. Watch below and then meet us on the other side for our thoughts.

Goosebumps right? Here are a couple of key takeaways that left us feeling invigorated.

  1. Obama doesn’t distinguish between the ‘other.’ No blue state, no red state, just a United States. You can hear the crowd roar when he makes this impactful statement. Here at TEDx we encourage the same thinking, we’re not other, we are one community, all hoping to achieve some type of change by sharing our ideas.
  2. Who can’t help but swoon when he thanks his ‘best friend’ his wife, Michelle Obama. How many of our fellow TEDxMelbournites have read her book Becoming? It’s a fascinating read, a scribe about what’s important to her (hint: not politics)! It’s also a fascinating glimpse into her life both pre-Obama and during their early years and really gives an insight into their work. Not just professionally but personally - I’m sure anyone who’s been married as long as they have can appreciate her honesty.
  3. ‘This victory belongs to you’ he tells the crowd of hundreds of thousands. But it’s his next comments that we think appeals directly to our TEDxMelbourne community, his campaign was not one that started with a lot of money, or a lot of endorsements. It did not begin in Washington. It was grassroots. He went out to the citizens of the US and appealed to them in classrooms, in community centres and at local events. His messages were delivered and shared first with local communities who then went and shared them further, and with every shared message more momentum built. And that’s what we aspire to. If Barack Obama can share his ideas at a local level and become President of the United States, then there really is no limit to what we can achieve at any level!
  4. He reminds us that success doesn’t happen overnight, ‘our road is long and the climb is steep,’and it’s a good way for us all to sit back and take stock of what we’ve achieved to date, and that we should remain hopeful when our journey experiences setbacks.
  5. Change takes time, or in Obama’s words, ‘victory is not change, it is the chance to make change.’ When we get a win, we should celebrate the win and then keep working to our goals.
  6. Finally, when you watch the video, take a moment to watch the crowds reaction (and a blink and you’ll miss her cameo from Oprah). Watch the faces of those listening intently, they’re nodding along, they’re crying, they’re inspired. Because together, ‘yes they can’ make the change.

If you’re feeling inspired to make your own change and want to share with us what’s important to you then apply for our Open Mic Night below!

To apply all you need to do is;

1. Submit a video about what’s important to you, it needs to be one minute or less

2. A quick summary of your idea, maximum 100 words.

Event details

When: Wednesday 27 March

Where: The Toff in Town (view on map)

Time: Doors open at 6.15pm for a 6.30pm start

Apply Now

Change Making
Public Speaking
Image of Elise, TEDx Melbourne writer
Written By
Elise Brown
Digital Content Consultant

Content and Campaign Consultant based in Melbourne. Specialising in making the complex simple. Currently working in financial services.

Image of Elise, TEDx Melbourne writer
Written By
Elise Brown
Digital Content Consultant

Content and Campaign Consultant based in Melbourne. Specialising in making the complex simple. Currently working in financial services.