Mario Sundar's Speakeasy

Spero Ventures. Early LinkedIn, Twitter. These are my thoughts on tech, brand, marketing and community.

Obama is a Leader from Hope & Community…

Quick Update: Techmeme has picked up on a thread that analyzes Barack’s social networking capability. Check out Steve’s (Zdnet) post here and a more detailed observation from Tony here.

Political brand marketing is a topic I’d love to investigate further. Many bloggers, including Scoble, have dissected the candidacy of the three leading Democrats in the fray – Clinton, Edwards and Obama. One of HBR’s list of breakthrough ideas is leadership that is rooted in Hope.

Our study of effective executives has uncovered many ways in which their decisions, words, and actions make the people they lead more hopeful. Collectively, these practices are the basis of a leadership tool kit for building and sustaining hope. But the most important change comes when a leader is simply more mindful of this vital part of her or his mission.

If you are an executive trying to lead an organization through change, know that hope can be a potent force in your favor. And it’s yours to give.

I believe this kind of leadership is all the more necessary in politics since it drives a nation. And I was pleasantly surprised to find those themes in Barack Obama’s address announcing his candidacy for President 08:

(Source: Flickr images — Barack Obama)

* community

I moved to Illinois over two decades ago. I was a young man then, just a year out of college; I knew no one in Chicago, was without money or family connections. But a group of churches had offered me a job as a community organizer for $13,000 a year.

* faith

It was in these neighborhoods that I received the best education I ever had, and where I learned the true meaning of my Christian faith.

* hope

It was here, in Springfield, where North, South, East and West come together that I was reminded of the essential decency of the American people – where I came to believe that through this decency, we can build a more hopeful America.

* symbolism

But the life of a tall, gangly, self-made Springfield lawyer tells us that a different future is possible. (reference to Lincoln)

Each and every time, a new generation has risen up and done what’s needed to be done. Today we are called once more – and it is time for our generation to answer that call. (call to action much like JFK’s “Ask not what your country can do for you – ask what you can do for your country” quote)

Obama definitely hit all the right notes but questions remain over whether he can translate his charisma into a democratic party nomination. He’s surely a breath of fresh air and it’ll be interesting to see how it plays out in the days to come. Let me close with another one of my favorite quotes from his address:

For that is our unyielding faith – that in the face of impossible odds, people who love their country can change it.

Do you think Obama will “BARACK THE VOTE”?


Filed under: Miscellaneous

9 Responses

  1. Kind of an interesting approach to politics…let’s see how things pan out. I wonder if Jeremiah will increase Obama’s social media score?

    I think that this is an attempt to woo young voters…something that might be critical….I just hope he’s sincere in doing it.


  2. Mario Sundar says:

    Well, looks like techmeme has an interesting discussion ( on’s social networking capabilities… Given Edwards blog campaigns recent stumbles it’s obvious that all three leading democratic contenders view social media as essential and are trying their best to set the standard.

    It’s official. Politics and social media is a necessary marriage made in hell!


  3. “It’s official. Politics and social media is a necessary marriage made in hell!”

    I think it will largely be determined by who is the victor.

    Don’t know if you caught the issue on TechCrunch today…check it out…


  4. Mario Sundar says:

    Ultimately, in both instances, the victor better be the common user; else it’s a waste of time.

    I did catch the article on techcrunch on the bug. Looks like things are back to normal, though. Edwards had his own stumble when some of his bloggers where cussing! What’s important is how you recover from these foul-ups. There’s definitely no room for error in closely contested elections.


  5. kennedy owino says:

    barak will barack the votes because he believes in god.
    god is the one who gives leadership and god is giving him grace to become america president,.
    obama nyasae oguedhi, walemoni.


  6. kennedy owino says:

    may the lord richly bless obama as make it to white house


  7. Mario Sundar says:

    Hi Kennedy,

    But I’m sorry, this is not a political forum/blog, rather one that dissects marketing aspects of subjects ranging from politics to technology.

    Thanks for visiting.


  8. […] Political brand messaging – Obama on Change January 5, 2008 Posted by Mario Sundar in brand marketing, community marketing. Tags: elections08, obama, politics trackback In my last post, I covered the importance for each and every professional to develop and maintain an online brand, since it is the wave of the future. Today, I just got done watching Charlie Rose dissect the historical and remarkable victory speech Obama gave yesterday after he won at the Iowa Caucus, and it got me thinking about a post I wrote almost a year ago, when Obama announced his candidacy (Post: Obama is a candidate from Hope and Community). […]


  9. […] because this is not a political blog, but if you’re interested check out my earlier posts on Obama’s leadership, his campaign’s embrace of community, other technology leaders supporting Obama (Craig […]


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